One of the things the management were very keen on doing this season was to have a settled team, something that many clubs in modern day football at this level struggle with week in week out.
But this year the feeling at Broadbridge Heath was ‘it was going to be different’ and after two excellent away wins at Little Common and Lancing home supporters were looking forward to watching sixth-placed Bears take on fourth-placed Newhaven at the Leisure Centre on Saturday.
Unfortunately things rarely work out as hoped and there were only five outfield players in the starting lineup who won so convincingly at Culver Road just four days earlier.
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However there were two new signings in the team, Dean Wright back from Loxwood and Charlie Pitcher who signed from Lancing making it 33 players who have appeared in the first team already this season.
The visitors started brightly with the league’s leading scorer Lee Robinson going close in the opening minutes with a header just wide of Kieron Thorp’s left post.
On six minutes Tim Cook tested the Newhaven keeper Jake Buss with a shot from distance but on the counter the ball was played up to Robinson who skipped a last ditch challenge on the edge of the penalty area to drill a right foot shot across the face of goal into the bottom left corner.
The Dockers went on to dominate long spells of the half and could have scored more with Thorp making a good save to deny Cal Connor, Kyle Woolven powering a header from a corner just wide of the post and Robinson rattling the crossbar with an acrobatic scissor kick.
For Heath Devon Fender broke through the defence but Buss was off his line quickly to force the player wide of goal and Charlie Pitcher was unlucky with a near post shot but minutes later the striker was substituted with a leg injury.
Heath started the second half better but without crating too many chances but on the hour Robinson doubled his teams lead when he sprinted away from the Heath defence to score his second of the match with another low shot across the goal into the bottom left corner.
The Bears responded well with Fender going close with a shot from distance and on 62 minutes it was the Heath strikers turn to outstrip the home defence and hit a low shot past Buss to bring his team back into the game.
The goal inspired Heath who went looking for the equaliser, Dean Wright hit a right footer from distance straight into the arms of Buss, Lee Carney was unlucky with a shot deflected wide of the post and Cook put his effort wide of the post when well placed, but the visitors always looked a threat and they wrapped up the game in the 86th minute when Tristan Jarvis got away down the right and hit a shot past Thorp into the net to win the game for the visitors.
Heath: Thorp, Jones, Findlay, Waddingham, Maxwell, Howard-Bold, Carney, Cook (Blake 85), Fender, Pitcher (Chowney 43), Wright.