Southern Premier Men’s League 2
Lewes Men’s 1s, 4
Epsom Men’s 1s, 1
(Jervis, Petch (2), Rickson)
Lewes returned to winning ways with a workmanlike performance at the Southdown Club.
The early exchanges saw Lewes’s confidence still suffering from their previous defeat the week before as they could not get into any rhythm with their play. Disjointed passages of play with passes going astray from both sides did not make for compulsive viewing but a piece of individual skill from an unlikely source broke the deadlock after twenty minutes. Full back Matt Rickson found himself on the left edge of the Epsom circle unmarked and with everyone including the goalkeeper expecting a cross he powerfully hit the ball inside the near post resulting in noisy but deserved celebrations. This settled Lewes down and an unselfish pass from Dave Roberts just before half time put in Jon Petch for the second.
Epsom needed to get back quickly into the game in the second half and they did so in comical fashion as a bobbling ball found its way to the far post whereupon both a Lewes defender and Epsom forward were on the ground only for the ball to find its way to the Epsom forward who slotted in. Lewes needed to dig deep and not concede again and they did so with Andrew Birch solid in the middle and youngster Harvey Waller and keeper David Harmes in defence having solid games. With fifteen minutes remaining Roberts again dribbled through, after a five man passing move from defence, and Petch was perfectly positioned to push his well timed pass into the empty net to make it 3-1. Epsom were frustrated and this showed with two players yellow carded and then from a penalty corner Rory Jervis struck home from close range with ten minutes remaining. Lewes then lost their discipline and were quickly down to nine players as well with poorly timed tackles but ran out in the end comfortable winners.
This weekend Lewes travel to Woking on Saturday before hosting second placed Oxford Hawks on Sunday at 3pm at the Southdown Club. They are four points behind the top two sides and know two victories are vital to keep alive their hopes of promotion.