Horsham’s hopes of a reprieve suffered a hit as their Ryman League campaign at Gorings Mead ended with a 5-3 defeat to Ramsgate this afternoon.
Relegated Hornets remain rooted to the foot of the South Division with the defeat, while the relegation-threatened Rams lifted themselves out of the bottom three.
The visitors took a three-goal lead through goals from Joe Taylor, Tom Chapman and captain Warren Schulz, before Tom Vickers pulled a goal back before the break.
Bailo Camara furthered reduced the deficit early in the second half, before Ramsgate hit a superb fourth through Aaron Quain and then a fifth from substitute Mitchell Knight, although Camara netted a late second.
The visitors had the early running and a delicate ball from Chapman on six minutes was flicked towards goal by the head of Matt Adams and Gareth Williams parried the awkward effort behind.
On ten minutes,from Horsham’s, first real venture forwards a ball over the top found Camara in space and he teed himself up, but somehow fired his half volley off target.,
At the other end, a low cross from Chris Elliott found Chapman in space five yards outside the box, but his dipping effort sailed over the bar.
The visitors took the lead on 14 minutes as a throw in on the left was defended badly and Taylor was allowed time and space to smash home an unstoppable volley from outside the box.
They added a second two minutes later as Chapman ghosted away on the right and delivered for Quain to tap home from close range.
A Camara ball over the top looked set to put Tony Nwachukwu away, but Danny Lawrence got just enough on the pass to cut it out
On 27 minutes, a teasing cross from wide right found Quain at the far post but he headed just wide of the far post under pressure.
A lethargic Hornets let in a simple third on 35 minutes as a ball across the area was helped on by Lawrence to an unmarked Schulz, who simply fired home.
Vickers gave the long-suffering Horsham fans something to cheer a minute later as he drove forwards and fired into the far top corner from 24 yards.
Williams stood up well to deny Ramsgate a fourth before the break as Joe Taylor broke away and tried to chip over the home stopper.
Horsham pulled to within a goal four minutes into the second half as Nwachukwu beat his man on the left and Stephen Butcher hooked his cross as far as Camara, who turned and stroked into the bottom corner.
The home side had strong shouts for a penalty waved away on 65 minutes as Elliott hauled down Nwachukwu on the far side of the area as he was about to shoot, but referee Matthew Lee was unmoved.
The Rams added a fourth on 67 minutes as Chapman played across field for Quain and he switched the ball onto his left foot and beautifully curled home into the top left corner from 23 yards.
Horsham’s defensive woes reappeared on 81 minutes as substitute Knight put a free header past Williams from a corner.
With two minutes to go, Camara pulled back a further consolation for the home side as he flicked home a low cross.
Horsham now must win away to Tooting & Mitcham next Saturday to lift themselves off the foot of the table and above Redhill, who were relegated today.
Horsham: Williams, Hope, Gilbert, Byrne, Rogers (Berry 28), Welch (Izokun 75), Branford, Vickers (Hadi 45), Howard-Bold, Nwachukwu, Camara. Unused subs: De Andrade.
Ramsgate: Shaw, Butcher, Lawrence, Punton, Elliott, Chapman, Wheatley, Schulz, Quain, Adams, Taylor (Knight 77). Unsused subs: Rogers, Sherman, Woolley, Varnier.