Loxwood Under-18s continued their excellent start to the season in the Sussex County Youth League and remained unbeaten after a 2-0 win at Clymping.
The first half saw a number of opportunities go begging but also some outstanding goalkeeping from the Clymping keeper, to thwart the Loxwood lads and keep the game 0-0 at half-time. Although Loxwood were creating chances they had to ensure they converted them, but even after Tom Killner-Brown’s header was ruled out for a push, Loxwood’s Stanley Rice was on hand with some sublime control to see Loxwood deservedly go 1-0 up after 73 minutes. Loxwood then extended their lead seven minutes later when a superb run by Tom Frankland saw his goal-bound shot deflected, but Ollie Clark rose above the Clymping defender to head in. With the rain playing a major part in the game, with puddles appearing all over the pitch, it stifled Loxwood’s passing game, but they still came out worthy 2-0 winners and it could have been a lot more, but for some excellent goalkeeping from the hosts. Stanley Rice and Tom Frankland were awesome on the flanks, but man of the match went to Harry Garman for a strong, assured performance at left back. Manager Richard Chaplin said: “We dominated the game today, but need to convert our chances and if it wasn’t for some outstanding keeping, we would have romped home. The boys are still learning but we couldn’t have asked more from them.” Squad: Aaron Chaplin, Callum McHale, Harry Garman, Anthony Guthrie, Tom Killner-Brown, Nick Warmisley, Alex Parsons (c), Tom Frankland, Stanley Rice, Jake Legrange, Jacob Waller, Ollie Clark, Luke Polie, Rowan Harmer, Zachary Love.
An immense performance saw Roffey U18s go top of the table with a sizzling 13-1 win over Pagham. Roffey had the same back four who played as a well drilled unit the week before with Tom Barnes using his head to score two goals. Ollie was on top of his game while Dav put in a great shift in the midfield. Alex Holmes not only scored a great goal this week but was everywhere on the pitch when it mattered and his the delivery of his corners caused Pagham plenty of problems. There were two goals apiece from Roffey’s Dan Whitticks and Zach Black, while Connor Messinger showed some amazing skills down the left and linked up fantastically link with various players as well as also finding the back of the net. Choosing the player of the match was a tough ask for the Roffey management, but it justifiably went to Chris Nicholson for scoring a magnificent five goals on his first appearance for the club in what was a fantastic debut display.
Lower Beeding Lions booked their place in the second round of the cup with a 6 - 0 victory over Royal United. Lions enjoyed plenty of possession in the first half but this was matched by Royal United’s good resilient performance. The deadlock was finally broken when Aaron Pyzer netted from the edge of the area. Lions added a second before half time with a long-range effort from Liam Ruz. The second half saw a similar pattern to the play, with Lions controlling the game but with Royals never giving up. As the period progressed the game grew more open and Lions benefited by adding a further four, two from Alex Moore and one each for Ed Kear and Jacob Dean. Sean Gulliver was Lions’ man of the match.
A much-improved second half performance in wet and soggy conditions saw Horsham Youth U15s run out 7-2 winners against Eastbourne Town Blue in the league. Horsham took an early lead through Liam Clarke when he beat a defender and scored at the second attempt. Eastbourne drew level though two minutes later and after rattling the crossbar and missing further chances they took the lead following a defensive mix-up. Horsham were soon level however with Clarke again on target, dispatching a low cross from Harry Batchelor who was causing Eastbourne problems down the right. With conditions worsening Horsham keeper Jack Reeves saved a curling shot before Alfie Carter cleared the resulting corner off the line to keep Horsham level at half time. Horsham came out far stronger in the second half and Finn Bigg restored their lead after two minutes before Clarke completed his hat-trick after Tom Summerfield and Hugo Cowan combined. Sub Nick Bristow added a fifth and Bigg made it 6-2 before Bristow rounded the keeper to complete the scoring.
There were seven separate scorers as Horsham Sparrows made cup progress with a commanding 11-1 win over Brockham Badgers Whites. Sparrows pressed from the off and against the run of play Badgers took an early lead. This spurred even greater effort from Sparrows and by half time they were leading 4-1. In the second half Sparrows pushed home their advantage to run out 11-1 victors. Goal scorers for Sparrows were Noah Chinn, Harry Close (two), Joe Gandy , Tom Haynes (two), George Leigh (two), Luke McDougall (two), Hugo Vickers. Joel Manvell was the Sparrows’ man of the match.
Partridge Green produced an impressive first half performance away to Ashurstwood, but had to survive a late fight back from the home side as they claimed a 4-3 victory. Matthew Sanders opened the scoring for Green, before Luke Hill doubled the advantage. A superb volley from Harry Copeland made it 3-0 before a well-taken goal from Henry James-Gibson put Green 4-0 up. Ashurstwood pulled one back just before the break. Green created several chances in the second half but could not find the target, but the home side fought back to make it 4-3, to set up a tense finish, but Green held on to secure victory.