Striker Matt Dingle came off the bench to hit a wonderful late winner as Loxwood put a dent in Broadbridge Heath’s promotion hopes last night.
In a near freezing contest Tim Martin had earlier cancelled out Tom Lyons’ second half opener for The Magpies, but eight minutes from time Dingle settled this tight contest when his dipping effort from 25 yards found the net.
“That’s the quality of the squad,” beamed a delighted Magpies boss Dave Cocoracchio. “He’s a young lad (Dingle), he’s sat on the bench and waited for his moment and tonight he’s taken it.”
The local rivals came into the game in polar form - Loxwood without a win in three while Heath were looking for a fifth straight victory, albeit having not played for two weeks.
And despite the first half producing no goals it was end to end. Heath started the stronger with the pace of Jamal Sultan down the right causing early problems.
Loxwood created arguably the better chances, and after Lyons had seen a header ruled out for offside, Lewis Scally nodded a fine Paul White cross inches over. For Heath Jake Holmes had failed to connect with a volley, former Magpie Damon Aston was denied by keeper Sam Smith, and at the end of the half Elliott Hawkes shot weakly at Jason Dumbrill.
Loxwood took the lead five minutes after the restart when Lyons expertly side-footed home Matt Hoyte’s pass.
Heath drew level nine minutes later when Martin lashed home from ten yards.
And though both sides continued to create half chances the visitors seemed more determined to find a winner, which arrived when Dingle lobbed home to give Loxwood revenge for defeat to Heath in December.
Heath boss Steve Painter said: “It’s a hard one to take, but it won’t ruin our season losing to Loxwood, an established County two side. I don’t think we worked hard enough, but it’s been a great season and we’ll push on from here.”
BBH: Dumbrill; Swaine, Chester, Flack, Attwater; Waddington, Arthur (Robinson 80), Martin, Sultan; Holmes, Aston (Wood 81).
Loxwood: Smith; Pett (Hoole 55), Awcock, French, Holvey; Merridew, Scally, White, Hoyte; Lyons, Hawkes (Dingle 75).