Any hopes that 4th place Lancing could undo 2nd from bottom Lavant’s lead following a home-side late goal by Danny Minter were dashed in six minutes from time when the away-team substitute Wayne Gavin fired home the Chichester side’s third goal.

Gary Curtson who had been substituted off and had scored Lancing’s goal when these two sides last met summed it up.  “Lavant started well” he said “but we had them under pressure after Minter’s goal until Lavant’s third goal finished it”.

Lavant indeed did start well.  Intense pressure led to a series of corners from which the away team hit the bar, shot just wide, and forced a great save from the Lancing keeper.

This was fully rewarded when striker Stuart Loversidge was put through to outpace the defender and steer the ball low and wide past the goalie into the far bottom corner of the net on 16 minutes.

After Minter was substituted five minutes later, Lancing edged their way into the game and despite a near miss by Lavant’s wing-back Daryl Hall just on the half-hour, they continued to strive for an equaliser.

The home-side continued their pressure in the second half coming close early on.  But then Lavant entered a golden patch with fresh les having been introduced and after forcing another series of corners Matt Hine topped an in-swinging corner from Ben Thom as deftly into the net at the near post on 60 minutes.

Thomas featured well.  He had netted earlier but had been ruled off-side.  Robbie Pinder forced a top class save from the excellent Lancing keeper.

Complacency led to a lack of concentration and Lancing soon had the Chichester side under pressure.  From an ensuing corner the wise old Minter glanced a header goal-ward which Mark Richardson hooked off the line but the ball was rightly judged to have crossed the line.

Nine minutes left and Lancing got the bit between their teeth and pressed for an equaliser but their spirit was broken as described in Curtson’s quote earlier, when a counter-attack saw a splendid Richardson, Ayers, Hine combination end in Gavin’s terrific finish.  This secured valuable points for the relegation zone contenders.  Can they really climb out of the cellar?

Team: M.Pullen, J.Strange, S.Blackman, M.Richardson, B.Thomas, M.Ayers, M.Hine, D.Hall, S.Loversidge, R.Pinder.  Subs: N.Farrer, W.Gavin, J.Smith.