Crawley Down Gatwick manager James Day delighted as Connor Baston scores first senior goal

Crawley Down Fc v Loxwood fc. Pic Steve Robards SR1827538 SUS-181015-121138001
Crawley Down Fc v Loxwood fc. Pic Steve Robards SR1827538 SUS-181015-121138001

Crawley Down Gatwick made it five wins in a row on Saturday with a hard fought 2-1 win over Loxwood in the SCFA Senior Challenge Cup.

Manager James Day was delighted his side extended their winning run.

He said: “We deserved to win but Loxwood fought very well.

“We conceded a soft penalty but then defended resolutely.

“We can still improve as a team. Confidence is high in the club.

“It’s nice the way we have gelled as a team and the young players doing well and to see 18-year-old Connor Baston score his first senior goal for the club.”

The Anvils raced into the lead inside the first minute.

Nick Sullivan went on a great run down the right and his superb cross to the back post was met by wing-back Baston, who finished brilliantly first time to record his first senior goal for the club.

He will be hard pressed to ever match it.

Loxwood were rewarded with an equaliser after 11 minutes.

Michael Belli was adjudged to have fouled an opponent, while trying to clear, and Michael Death duly converted the resultant penalty despite a great attempt to save by Andy Greaves.

The home side suffered a blow when influential midfield maestro, Michael Belli, had to limp off with a dead leg to be replaced by striker Oli Leslie with the versatile Sam Cane dropping into midfield.

Leslie was involved in the Anvils’ second goal just before half-time when, after a good run at the heart of the Loxwood defence, he unselfishly laid the ball off to strike partner, Nick Sullivan, who finished calmly to send the Anvils into half-time with a deserved lead.

The second half was exciting and end-to-end with both goalkeepers making very good saves.

To their great credit Loxwood never gave up and pushed the home side until the end and at times the Anvils were hanging on.

The relief was tangible amongst the home spectators when the referee eventually blew for time.

There was also a sense of disbelief that there was no score in the second period and an even greater mystery as to how Loxwood, playing as they did on Saturday, can be where they are in the league table.

It can only be a matter of time before they convert performances into points and climb the table.

Day added: “We just want to keep the winning momentum to make it six or seven wins in a row.”

Crawley Down Gatwick were due to travel to Newhaven on Tuesday and are then are at home to Eastbourne United on Saturday, kick-off 3pm at the Haven Centre.

Crawley Down Gatwick: Greaves, D.Sullivan, Baston (Thomas), Cooney, Pelling, Belli (Leslie), N.Sullivan, Cane (Petty), Spence. Unused substitutes: Packham, Wraight

Attendance: 75