Lions are second team to deny leaders Shoreham

Pagham on the attack against Shoreham / Picture by Roger Smith
Pagham on the attack against Shoreham / Picture by Roger Smith
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The Lions recent winless run might have continued as table-topping Shoreham came to Nyetimber Lane – but they can console themselves with the fact they became only the second team in 17 league games to stop the leaders winning.

Pagham were quickest out of the blocks, testing keeper Josh Heyburn in the second minute. Shoreham swept to the other end and Richard Greenfield’s shot whistled just over Pagham’s bar.

James Thurgar was looking lively for the home side and could have claimed a penalty after 11 minutes, but the appeals were waved away by the referee.

Kieron Pamment hit the side netting, while both Rob O’Toole and Tom Burton saw strikes go awry for Shoreham.

Shoreham took the lead just before 20 minutes. Pagham skipper Dan Swain took out a player in the area, and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Up stepped O’Toole to smack the ball past James Binfield.

Shoreham stepped up a gear, with a pinpoint pass from Ryan Storrie putting Burton through, only for his shot to go over the bar.

This they did on 38 minutes, again from a corner as Scott Murfin’s delivery found its way into the bottom corner of the Shoreham net.

A Lions corner went whistling across goal as they desparately tried to find a way back into it.

This they did on 38 minutes, again from a corner as Scott Murfin’s delivery found its way into the bottom corner of the Shoreham net.

It could have been 2-1 a few minutes later as Jordan Clark weaved the ball to Shay Wiggans, whose header rebounded off the bar and away to safety. Binfield was called into action to parry a shot by Joe Dryer.

HT 1-1

Shoreham looked the more likely as the second half started. Richard Greenfield and O’Toole had openings to score, Binfield keeping them at bay.

On 55 minutes, Andy Pearson replaced Greenfield.

Dan Swain’s pass to Clark saw the ball struck just wide of the upright as the Lions began to find their teeth.

Just after the hour controversy reigned with Murfin appearing to be upended in the area. Again the penalty appeals were turned down, causing much consternation and Pagham assistant boss Richie Hellens found himself sent to the stand after saying too much. A long pause in play followed as the referee insisted on Hellens moving away from the dug-out.

Joe Dryer was next in the book after bringing Pamment down. Pagham almost conceded a second on 69 minutes in a defensive mix-up.

They were close at the other end shortly afterwards, Joe Shelley going close from a Murfin free-kick. Dryer and Burton had chances to score, with Burton booked for dissent as he felt aggrieved following his strike on goal.

Shelley was next to be cautioned after a late-ish tackle. Pagham’s best chance of a second goal was ruined by two players getting in each other’s way with the net at their mercy.

Thurgar was replaced by Ryan Morey with eight minutes to go. Two free-kicks for the Lions saw Heyburn kept busy, while Morey struck a low shot that the keeper did well to deal with.

The game ended all square and both sides seemed happy with a point.

Pagham: Binfield, Wiggans, Warren, French, Wollers, Swain, Shelley, Clark, Pamment, S Murfin, Thurgar (Morey 82). Subs: N Murfin, Bingham, Overton

Shoreham: Heyburn, Hartley, Storrie, Packer, Denyer, O’Hagan, Greenfield, Keehan, O’Toole, Burton, Dryer. Subs: Craddock, Pearson, Goldson.

JON ROSE

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