Hassocks keep up title chase with win at Horsham YMCA – Haywards Heath Town promotion hopes alive too

Hassocks and Haywards Heath Town were among winners in Easter Saturday’s programme of fixtures in the SCFL premier.
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Horsham YMCA 0 Hassocks 1

by Martin Read

Horsham YMCA chalked up their fourth straight league defeat against visiting Hassocks – but, while they couldn’t complain that they were hard done by, it was yet another case of YM giving a good account of themselves against a team well above them in the table, only to finish on the losing side.

A goal for Haywards Heath against Loxwood | Picture: Ray TurnerA goal for Haywards Heath against Loxwood | Picture: Ray Turner
A goal for Haywards Heath against Loxwood | Picture: Ray Turner

After early chances at either end, the Robins’ Sean Stephenson tested diving YM keeper Aaron Jeal, before, following their second corner, Matt Gunn gave the visitors the lead in the 27th minute.

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Faris Khallouqi and Jack Troke then troubled YM, who were relieved when a second goal was disallowed. YM then lost two players to injury – captain Hayden Neathey (heel) and Sekou Toure (concussion check), the first half ending with a long range shot by Josh Neathey coming close.

End to end play ensued on the resumption, Troke heading straight to Jeal, and Joe Ball firing wide ahead of Jamie Taylor pressing for YM at the other end.

With 10 minutes remaining, YM had used up all of their subs, but they kept pushing, despite another Hassocks corner, and had two late opportunities with free kicks taken by Dean Lovegrove, the first whistling over and the second – the last kick of the game – drawing a bottom right save from Hassocks keeper Fraser Trigwell.

Hassocks chairman Dave John said the Robins deserved to win, with the 3 points keeping them in contention for a play off promotion spot.

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YM Assistant Manager Andy Howard told the County Times: “Another frustrating game for us! We had at least as much possession and created as many chances, holding our own against a strong side, but again we got nothing from it.”

On Saturday YM welcome mid-table Lingfield to Goings Mead, while, at Hassocks’ Beacon HQ, Bexhill United are the visitors.

Haywards Heath Town continued their chase for a top-five finish and a play-off spot with a 3-0 win over Loxwood – after the club opened their new cafe, Simmo’s.

Byron Napper, Lewis Finney and Jaco Minty got the goals, all before half-time.

In the Isthmian premier, goals by Martyn Box and Noah Hoffman earned Burgess Hill Town a 2-2 draw away to Erith and Belvedere.

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