Pagham mow down Marigolds as Monsoon arrives!
By Tony Shea
On the wettest and windiest night of the year so far, Pagham dismantled Littlehampton and, in the end, with a little more careful finishing, could have scored eight or nine.
The game didn’t start off looking like a drubbing and it wasn’t until the 12th minute that the Lions managed their first strike at goal when Jamie Horncastle blasted over from distance. It wasn’t long after however, that they took the lead when Andy Chick sent a high cross into the box from the left wing which evaded everyone and floated into the net.
Overton nearly made it two a couple of minutes later when he managed to get around the keeper, but his shot was blocked on the line. Pagham did double their lead in the 25th minute when Callum Overton scored his first of the night with a cheeky backheel after Terrell Lewis had fed the ball into the six-yard box.
And they almost made it three a minute later when Lloyd Rowlatt had a header kicked off the line from a corner. So far, the only problems caused by Littlehampton were a long range shot over the bar and a 25 yarder well saved by Pagham keeper Binfield. And then out of the blue the Marigolds pulled one back when home striker Alex Laing broke through the Lions offside trap, managed to get around Binfield and slotted in from an acute angle.
Six minutes later and Pagham restored their two-goal cushion when Callum Overton broke through the middle, skipped around a defender and was then up-ended in the box by Hagan who got a red card for being the last man. Overton stroked home from the spot himself, low the keeper’s left.
And the Lions could have added another before half time when Terrell Lewis hit the bar and Overton’s shot on the rebound was blocked on the line in the last minute of the half.
Straight from the second half kick-off the ball was played out to Scott Murfin and his speculative long shot from way out on the left-hand side, squeezed under the keeper to make it 1-4. The chances kept coming for the away side and Overton squirted a chance over the bar from close in after a difficult bounce. Terrell Lewis then almost grabbed another for the Lions when his raking drive was saved by Hutchings in the home team goal.
On a rare breakaway, the home team then hit the bar from around 40 yards and a follow-up shot was once again well saved by Binfield. But it was soon all Pagham again and Callum Overton completed his hat-trick from close in, tapping home a superb low cross by Scott Murfin in the 58th minute.
The weather was now closing in and the driving rain that had been coming down since early in the game was driven across the pitch by high winds. Another Terrell Lewis drive from the edge of the box was well saved and was followed by a raft of substitutions over the next couple of minutes by the Lions as George Bingham, George Cody and David Crouch replaced Neil Murfin, Terrell Lewis and Jamie Horncastle for the Lions.
As the weather steadily worsened, Pagham were creating chance after chance to increase their lead as Chick, Overton and Scott Murfin all had shots saved, before Scott Murfin added his second, from the spot three minutes from full time, after David Crouch was brought down by Ross McKay who was sent off to reduce the hosts to nine men.
And still Pagham poured the pressure on their hosts as Scott Murfin hit a drive wide after being sent clean through and George Cody shot over from wide left before the referee put an end to Littlehampton’s misery and the players and officials could scurry back to the warmth of the dressing rooms!
Pagham: James Binfield, Neil Murfin (George Bingham), Daryl Wollers, Joe Kilhams, Johan Van Driel, Jamie Horncastle (David Crouch), Lloyd Rowlatt, Andy Chick, Callum Overton, Scott Murfin, Terrell Lewis (George Cody). Booked: Scott Murfin.