Pagham hit five again and beat Loxwood in the process!
Pagham's five star performance ensured the Magpies were again out of luck against the Lions. With other results going their way, the Lions ended the year in 2nd place, closing in on League leaders Haywards Heath town.
The visitors had already been trounced 4-1 at home back in August. It could have, and should have been 6-1 here as Pagham scored five for an incredible fourth game in a row. The game began with an impeccably observed minute's applause in memory of Sussex football stalwart Steve Piper who'd passed a few days before the match.
The first chance of the game came to Loxwood, Wood shooting wide of the mark, with Wright going close a minute later. As many times this season, it was James Binfield to the rescue with a tremendous save.
Goal number one for the Lions came in the 7th minute. An Andy Chick free-kick flew into the Magpies' area. After a bit of pinball between players, Lloyd Rowlatt found the net with a fine strike.
This pushed the Lions onto better things, constant pressure on Loxwood being rewarded with a second goal on 20 minutes. Terrell Lewis collected a pass, ran toward goal, and Sam Smith in Loxwood's net had no chance with the final shot.
Terrell was involved in controversy a couple of minutes later, when a free-kick was awarded to the visitors after what seemed a very innocuous challenge by Lewis.
Loxwood then took the game to Pagham for a while, Bachelor & Wright giving Binfield a little work to do. A number of niggling challenges on Dan Simmonds were finally noticed by the referee on 25 minutes, and the free-kick was greeted by ironic cheers from the home fans. Simmonds took a different view, and an exchange with the referee could have seen Simmonds booked for dissent.
He and Callum Overton are dovetailing well this season, and an unselfish cross from Simmonds to Overton on the half hour saw the latter shoot at Sam Smith.
Loxwood weren't doing so well in front of goal, a free-kick from Magpies' skipper Napper went high, wide and horrible over the bar. A Pagham foul bought another session of Magpies' pressure, with Wood going close with a shot across goal .
A superb crossfield ball from Chick to Simmonds was only spoilt by Loxwood defender Holvey getting in the way. A defensive error by Magpies' Courtney let Callum Overton run with the ball. Stroking a pass to Simmonds, only the offside flag robbed the Lions of a deserved third at the break.
No changes for the second half, but if it wasn't broken don't fix it seemed to be the Pagham maxim.
Four minutes in the visitors did have a legitimate penalty appeal turned down, but then came Pagham's fourth. A shot came in, pinged down off the bar, and Joe Booker was on hand to steer the ball past Smith.
More controversy on 52 minutes. Callum Overton shot from the right, the ball appeared to go into the net with some force. Such force that it pinged off the advertising hoarding behind the goal. It may have been this that had the officials denying Overton his glory. Even so, to most in the ground it was a legitimate strike and should have been the Lions' third.
The Lions carried on as if nothing had happened, and got their fourth on the hour mark. Dan Simmonds added to his already impressive season tally with a run and shot that gave Smith no chance.
The Magpies then scored their goal. A free-kick taken by Napper found its way to Moore who managed to squeeze a shot past Binfield.
Pagham weren't about to let that goal put them off their stride though, Overton' s shot being charged down. The home side also had a shot ping back off Loxwood's post before on 76 minutes the lights went out. With many in a packed Nyetimber Lane thinking that was that for today, they left their seats whilst the Pagham groundstaff did their utmost to get the floodlights working again. That they did, with only a ten minute or so delay.
The Lions made the most of the enforced break, and came back even stronger than before. Shots rained in from all over the place,with both Simmonds & Overton having chances. Simmonds took one of his, scoring his second & Pagham's fifth with a well taken goal near the end.
The final whistle then blew on another magnificent performance & Peacehaven are next awaiting the Lions' roar.
Pagham; J.Binfield, S.Wiggans, R.Cox, J.Booker, D.Wollers, G.Bingham, T.Lewis (J.Kilhams 87), A.Chick (D.Crouch 89), D.Simmonds, L.Rowlatt, C.Overton; R.Davidson, J.Van Driel