Horsham remained well in the promotion mix with a comfortable 5-2 home victory over basement side Tunbridge Wells on Saturday.
The hosts eased to a 5-0 victory to remain fourth in the division, three points behind Banbury in second place and two behind third placed Trojans.
Saturday may have been a day of FA Cup upsets but everything went to plan for Horsham at Broadbridge Heath against Tunbridge Wells as Duncan Howarth’s men comfortably took all three points and improved their goal difference a few notches.
Horsham looked a bit ring rusty in the first half, but with Mark Ansell back in the squad, build-up play through the midfield was smooth and controlled but, despite plenty of time in the visitors’ D, the strikers couldn’t seem to finish.
It was always going to be important to go into the break in the lead and the Horsham front line finally clicked 10 minutes before half-time, Jack Dean gliding though the defence and teeing up Cirdec Atkinson.
Within three minutes of the restart, Horsham had sealed the three points. John Burroughs weaved through the opposition to set up Dean. Matt Hough then converted a short corner to take his total for the season into double figures.
As Wells started to tire, the play became all Horsham and Joe Humphey’s twice ran from wide on the right to net past the visitors enormous keeper from an acute angle.
Manager Al Campbell was pleased with the performance and said: “The scrap for the second promotion place out of the division now looks a three-way race between Horsham, Banbury and Trojans.
“With the other two only managing to draw their games this week the pendulum has swung slightly in our favour. Our game away at Trojans next week will be a true six-pointer.’
“With two key players due to return this week there will be a fight for selection. It’s not a bad problem to have at this time of the season.”