Super sub Pitcher strikes twice to sink Lancing

Luke Donaldson netted for Lancing on Saturday. Picture: Stephen Goodger

Luke Donaldson netted for Lancing on Saturday. Picture: Stephen Goodger

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Substitute Charlie Pitcher struck twice in the final 15 minutes as Loxwood came away with all three points at Lancing on Saturday.

Luke Donaldson had given Lancers a third-minute lead but a pair of strikes from Pitcher helped his side to a 2-1 Southern Combination League Premier Division victory.

Robin Deen also missed a penalty on the stroke of the interval as Lancing came away with nothing to show for their efforts.

Despite the defeat, caretaker assistant manager Martin Gander, who is helping current caretaker boss John Sharman, felt there were positives to take.

He said: “We played some really good stuff and were resolute for most of the game.

“The only difference was the quality they were able to bring on from the bench.

“We were a little bit leggy in the closing stages and when someone of Charlie’s quality is introduced it is always going to be tricky.

“I think a turning point came after Robin’s miss from the penalty spot. If that goes in, we’ve got a slight cushion and the next goal is crucial.

“Looking back, a point would probably have been fair but they really came at us in the second half.

“We kept pushing but we could not get back in it after going behind.”

Lancers went ahead following some good pressing work inside three minutes. Loxwood were under pressure and a misplaced back pass fell to Donaldson, who was on hand to fire home.

The home side were then handed a perfect opportunity to double their lead five minutes before the break. Donaldson was hauled down by Loxwood goalkeeper Harrison Hilfiker with a spot-kick awarded. Hilfiker made up for his error as he parried Deen’s penalty clear.

With 15 minutes left to play, Lancing still led but Pitcher’s introduction turned things.

The forward, making his Magpies return after signing from Shoreham earlier in the week, levelled things up on 75 minutes to set-up an enthralling final few minutes.

It was that man Pitcher again who got the winner four minutes later as Loxwood completed the turnaround.

Lancing showed great character to keep pushing in the closing stages but they could not find an equaliser.

LANCING: Green; Mills, Bygraves, Sharman, Fenton; Hendy, Waterman, Caplin; Williamson, Deen, L.Donaldson. Subs: B.Donaldson (Mills), Baah (Deen), Finney (Waterman).

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