A last gasp goal denied Westfield’s footballers a notable victory away to second-placed opposition on Saturday.
The Westies conceded a 93rd minute equaliser to draw 3-3 at Wick & Barnham United in Macron Store Sussex County Football League Division Two.
Westfield manager Jethro Warren said: “Most of us were quite disappointed not to go away with the three points. We led 3-1 and were quite comfortable, and we kind of threw it away ourselves. I would’ve taken a point before the game, so it’s not all doom and gloom.”
Although 10 places and 24 points beneath their opponents, Westfield started well and that set the tone for the rest of the contest.
Westfield drew first blood after 20 minutes when Lawrence Brand delivered a free kick from out wide and Matt Dadswell rose highest to head into the corner of the net.
Wick, who were 3-0 winners in the reverse fixture on the opening day of the season, got back on level terms in the 38th minute. Westfield failed to deal with a long ball and Andrew Chick rounded goalkeeper Connor Holland to score, although Sam Henham almost got back to clear off the line.
Westfield pressed the ball very well, however, and didn’t give Wick any time. Gordon Cuddington capitalised on a mistake in the home defence to give Westfield a 2-1 half time advantage.
Shortly after the restart, Dadswell scored another header from a free kick to give Westfield a two-goal cushion against a Wick side which has lost just two of its 22 league matches all season.
But Carl Morris, playing at full-back rather than in goal, was shown a second yellow card midway through the half and Wick started to mount some sustained pressure.
Warren conceded in his own words a “silly” penalty which Ashley Harper converted to make it 3-2, yet Westfield were still on the brink of just a third away league victory of the campaign.
It was snatched away from them, though, right at the death. A long ball was flicked on and Kieron Playle-Howard scored with a good finish on the half-volley.
Conner Burton enjoyed a decent debut, but Jack Whiteman suffered a dislocated shoulder after coming on as a substitute.
Westfield: Holland; Williams, Henham, Archer, Morris; Warren, Brand; Coombes (Whiteman (Drinkwater)), Cuddington, Burton; Dadswell.