Hollington United Football Club’s first team went level on points with the league leaders following Saturday’s home victory.
The Lions came from behind to win 2-1 against 10-man Forest Row in the Mid Sussex League Premier Division courtesy of goals from Allan McMinigal and Dominic Clarke.
With the majority of games called-off last weekend, it was somewhat of a surprise that the Gibbons Field pitch was deemed fit. Massive credit to Shaun Godfrey for his work.
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As both teams started at a high tempo, Hollington defender Sean Ray saw his header hit the post and Clarke had a shot blocked on the line.
But it certainly wasn’t one-way traffic. The visitors had their fair share of chances, but found the impressive Elliot Stokes hard to beat in the Hollington goal.
The game changed on the stroke of half time when Forest Row had a player sent-off for kicking out on Danny Andrews.
The second period couldn’t have started any worse for Hollington, though, as they conceded within 30 seconds of the restart.
The Lions’ response was good, but missed chances and indifferent decision making in the final third looked to be proving costly.
The introduction of Samuel Scott, Finlay Page - another two 16-year-olds making their debuts - and Dan Kearley gave the side a new energy.
And it wasn’t long before McMinigal equalised with a terrific strike from the edge of the area. 1-1 soon become 2-1 to the Lions when Kian Moynes, who again impressed, delivered an inch-perfect cross for Clarke to head home.
It was all one-way traffic from then on, and Scott, Alan Foster and Dan Kearley all went close to widening Hollington’s margin of victory in a hard-fought game against a very good side. Man of the match was Moynes.
Hollington manager Scott Price said: “Three points was all that mattered today. We knew Forest Row were coming to us in good form, and with the weather and pitch making conditions extremely difficult, it was a case of getting the job done, especially after losing in our last game.
“But once again the players, after going behind, found a way of winning. Again I had no issue with chucking on another two 16-year-olds who made their debuts in Samuel and Finlay.
“I think that’s seven now this season who’ve made their debuts in men’s football and not one has looked out of their depth.”
Hollington have a Sussex Intermediate Challenge Cup third round tie away to league rivals Balcombe this coming Saturday.