Bexhill boss toasts 'one of best' - and plots for second meeting with Littlehampton Town

Ryan Light described Bexhill United’s win at Pagham as one of the best of the season so far – and said his players were continuing to do him proud.

Bexhill United's Jack Shonk
Bexhill United's Jack Shonk

It was a depleted Pirates team that made the trip to West Sussex last Saturday but they came away with a 1-0 win – the first time since the opening day the Lions had failed to score in a league game.

Bexhill then went toe to toe with league leaders Littlehampton in the Peter Bentley Cup in midweek only to lose on penalties. And Light said the players were looking forward to another meeting with the Golds, in the league, tomorrow.

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At Pagham, Bexhill had seven first-team players missing and handed starts to under-18 duo Ollie Hull and Aaron Cook.

In a tight game a Jack Shonk bicycle kick in the 78th minute won it and moved Bexhill to fourth place.

Light said: “It was definitely up there as one of our best wins so far this season. To have so many players missing and still deliver such a controlled and disciplined performance was really pleasing.”

At Littlehampton in the cup, the home side took the lead on ten minutes through an own goal, but Shonk poked home an equaliser two minutes later.

The home side took the lead once more in the 39th minute only for Shonk to equalise again within two minutes with a fine finish from a tight angle.

The second half swung from end to end and Bexhill were desperately unlucky not to win it late on when a Bradley Pritchard strike rattled the crossbar.

It went to penalties and Littlehampton won 4-3.

Light said: “We were disappointed to lose via a penalty shootout, but I was so proud of our performance against a quality side who are the team to beat at this level.”

Tomorrow the sides meet again in a fourth versus first clash at The Polegrove.

Light added: “We’ve notoriously done well at home against the top sides in recent years. In fact it’s been two years since we lost a league game at home to anybody.

“We know Littlehampton are a very good side, the league table doesn’t lie. We have respect for them, but we don’t fear anyone and like Tuesday night, we’re once again looking forward to the challenge.”