Broadbridge Heath booked their place in the semi-finals of the RUR Cup with a 2-0 victory away at Littlehampton on Tuesday night.
An Ollie Moore brace sent the Bears through to the last four where they will face Newhaven.
Midweek away games have become a real burden for Heath this season and this was no exception with eight regular first team players unavailable for the game.
But Steve Painter heaped praise on his side and said: “The long and the short of it is we had six out that would have started, not squad players, but we deserved to win it.
“It was not a smash and grab, it was a good win and the players that came in showed hunger and wanted it.
“I was delighted after the game and it was one of the most pleasing performances of the season.
“I do not mind admitting going down there I was really worried. They have been in really good form and George Gaskin is a handful when you have your first team playing.
“They all showed real character and deserved to win and deserve to be in the semi-final.”
As expected from a team who have won nine of their last ten matches, the home-side created a number of openings in the first period but the finishing of their prolific strikers George Gaskin and George Landais was lacking.
Both wasted good opportunities blasting them high or wide of goal and a couple that were on target went straight into the arms of Heath keeper Michael Chester.
Heath may not have had the same number of chances, but the home side was grateful for the alertness of their own keeper Jon Hendrick who saved a header from Jake Legrange, smothered a shot from Kieron Purkis and then denied Legrange again when the striker thought he was through.
However the keeper was helpless in first-half injury time when Legrange rifled a shot at goal from 25 yards that crashed against the underside of the crossbar and out to safety.
The combination of Gaskin and Landais were again in action at the start of the second period with the latter’s effort comfortably saved by Chester.
Midway through the half, a Heath free-kick was played into the penalty area where Jake Holmes was wrestled to the ground by Mitchell Hand, who picked up his second booking in quick succession and Heath were awarded a penalty.
Moore coolly slotted home from the spot to give the Bears the lead and his side never looked in danger with the extra man.
With five minutes remaining, Legrange broke away and picked out Moore arriving late on the edge of the box and the Heath midfield player hammered a right-foot shot past Hendrick to take Heath to their third RUR Cup semi-final in four years.
Heath: M.Chester, Robinson (Ozga 55), Wicking, Attwater, Flack, Chester, Moore Wragg (Clark 88), Purkis (D Robinson), Holmes, Legrange.
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