A second-half Joe Shelley penalty saw Horsham creep into the preliminary round of the FA Cup as they overcame Lancing 1-0 at Gorings Mead this afternoon.
There was little magic of the cup on show in a fairly tight game which at times lacked any real stand-out quality.
Shelley’s 67th spot-kick was the difference as Dominic Di Paola’s Hornets failed to get going on a rare Sunday afternoon outing.
Lancers probably edged a poor first half, but it was Horsham that had the better of the second and will go through to face the winners of Deal Town and Worthing United’s replay on Saturday, August 29.
Ryan Storrie made his debut, Samir Hadi started and Kev Keehan returned for the Hornets in three changes from their midweek league victory.
Keehan, however, lasted just seven minutes as he again tweaked his hamstring and was replaced by Brad Lewis.
Both sides were keen to get the ball down and play, but with the hosts sloppy in possession it was the Lancers that put together better phases of play - although were restricted to a couple of tame efforts at Gareth Williams by Alex Fair and George Fenton.
On 28 minutes, a Fair cross flashed across the goalmouth but was just too far away from the arriving Mike Williamson to get a touch at the far post.
Horsham’s first real effort came from Hadi after Darren Boswell took the ball off a centre-back in a dangerous position, but Hadi’s tame effort was as easy take for Callum Fidler.
Good work on the right by Boswell saw him jink into the box on the byline and feed Scott Murfin, but Fidler was down well to hold the angled-effort which took a deflection.
The best chance of the half came two minutes before the break as Fair cut the ball back for right-back Jake Mills in the box, but he blazed over the bar when well placed from 12 yards.
Horsham started the second half with renewed vigour and within a minute, Murfin riffled over from close-range after Hadi set away Boswell on the left and he delivered into his team-mate’s path with a first-time cross.
Murfin then held up a ball forwards from Charlie Farmer on the edge of the box and teed up Boswell, whose dipping shot went narrowly over the bar.
Horsham had the led on 67 minutes as substitute Kieron Pamment got goal side of his man in the box and was pushed by Dave O’Callaghan with referee pointing straight to the spot and Shelley tucked the spot-kick into the bottom right.
With 15 minutes remaining, Williams pulled of his first real stop of the half diving to his right to keep out Will Berry’s curling effort.
The industrious Adam Hunt then flew into two tackles to win and keep the ball and then fired over the bar from 25 yards.
Murfin curled another one over the bar after a neat pass from Pamment, while at the other end, Farmer put a great block on on Fair as he lined up an effort on the edge of the area.
Horsham: Williams, Storrie, Jones, Farmer, Duncan, Hunt, Shelley, Keehan (Lewis 7), Hadi (Pamment 57), Murfin, Boswell (Knee 88). Unused subs: Chadwick, O’Hagan, Charles.
Lancing: Fidler, Mills, Bygraves, J.Spinks, Fenton, Williamson, O’Callaghan (Greenfield 79), Rouan, A.Spinks (Adams 78), Fair, Berry. Unused subs: Sharman, Westlake, Stuart, Morrish.