Lavant Reserves 4 Worthing Boro 2
Lavant defending the corner
Lavant will be enjoying Christmas at the top of West Sussex Division 3 South, after a hard-fought win over promotion rivals Worthing Borough.
Two goals apiece from John Langridge and Lee Smith helped the Chichester side overcome their opponents and replace them at the summit of the table.
Lavant were out of the blocks like a shot, Langridge scoring twice in the first 3 minutes. After a half clearance, Paul Taylor headed the ball back in and the big striker reacted first, nodding over the onrushing keeper, before hitting an instinctive left foot volley from 20 yards a minute later. It could have been a 5 minute hat-trick for Langridge but his shot on the turn grazed the outside of the post.
Worthing were rocked but began to get back into the game by throwing players forward, however they were always susceptible to the counter attack. Lavant scored a third on 25 minutes, keeper Ash Court’s kick clearing the left back and Lee Smith beating the keeper to the bouncing ball, heading into the empty net.
However the visitors had a lifeline 5 minutes later, when Lavant failed to pick up markers from a throw-in on their right, and the cross was guided in to the top corner.
‘Boro were keen to make a fast start to the second half and had another on 49 minutes when the unfortunate James Batten’s diving interception diverted a cross past Court. However despite plenty of possession and territory they never really threatened another goal and it was Lavant who came closest as the ball was poked past the keeper, who just recovered to clear off the line ahead of Langridge.
Chris Coe on the ball
The game started to become more physical as the away side became frustrated, but the industrious midfield duo of James Brooks and Charlie McLaren were no pushover, and Batten’s explosive runs from centre back began to force the visitors back.
A substitution with 8 minutes to go was to prove vital as Smith was reintroduced up front and Pete Caveney put on the left. Within two minutes Smith made the game comfortable; sub Adam Yaxley broke up an attack and Caveney was released down the flank before crossing to the back post for the unmarked Smith to power home a header and give Lavant the perfect present going in to the holiday period.
Lavant: Ash Court, Chris Coe, Tom Parker, James Batten, Matt Grace, Charlie McLaren, James Brooks, Paul Taylor, Greg Ayling, Lee Smith, John Langridge. Subs: Simon Augustus, Adam Yaxley, Will Cieszynski, Pete Caveney, Tom Haslam.