Heath unable to make extra man pay
The Heath entertained local rivals Three Bridges FC in a feisty encounter which led to plenty of fireworks on the pitch.
In the very first minute a slip from Ben Holden on the wet surface allowed Kieron Pamment the opportunity to drive forwards and attempt a speculative effort from 30 yards. Collings in the Heath goal was caught cold and could only tip the ball into the goal.
Things went from bad to worse in the 15th minute when a driven shot from outside the box was spilled by Collings, and as he attempted to dive on the rebound he caught the Bridge’s forward, giving away a spot kick.
Collings redeemed himself though from the resultant penalty. O’Neill going down the middle but Collings trailing leg flicked upwards as he dove to his left, guiding the ball to safety.
Bridges continued to control proceedings, and created several opportunities but some poor finishing along with smart Collings saves kept the score down to one.
The Heath were growing in confidence as the game went on though, and a low cross by Alex Laing was just beyond the outstretched boot of Tom Collins who was playing his last game for the club.
The game changed dramatically on the hour mark, as Noel Leighton was given a second yellow for a terrible challenge which could have seen the Bridge’s man given a straight red.
From there whilst Bridge’s still had a threat on the counter it was the Blue’s creating the better chances, with a Dean Gunner header being expertly tipped over the bar by Anderson in the visitor’s goal.
A Laing effort was deflected into the path of Tom Collins who flicked the ball goalwards but unfortunately softly into the path of Anderson. Minutes later Gunner attempted an acrobatic bicycle kick and was so close to making contact just yards out.
Jay Lovett rolled the dice bringing on three forwards in Diallo, Pingling and Dobell for Collins, Napper and Holden as Bridge’s started to tire. The latter two combined in the 90th minute to finally breach the visitors resistance.
Pingling showed great composure to hold the ball up and slot it into Dobell on the edge of the six yard box. Dobell again did the same taking several touches to set up the right angle to strike the ball into the bottom corner and send the Heath fans in the Shed End into raptures!
MOTM: Brad Santos
Haywards Heath Town: 1 Billy Collings, 2 Ben Holden (Cameron Dobell 84), 3 Spike Steggall, 4 Byron Napper (Mo Diallo 88), 5 George Brown, 6 Dean Gunner, 8 James Dickson, 15 Brad Santos, 10 Tom Collins (Pingling 76), 11 Alex Laing, 16 Conrad Honore,
Subs: 7 Luca Valentine, 14 Cameron Dobell, 9 Mo Diallo, 17 Richard Pingling, 18 Mario Gjini