Lancers split the points with Peacehaven
By Jack Taylor
It was a 1-1 draw at Culver Road on Tuesday, following a late equaliser from Peacehaven.
Lancing's home fixture against Peacehaven and Telscombe began with standing ovation to honour the passing of Lancing club stalwart, commmitte member and official Mike Clark who died on Saturday 16th February.
Lancing began brightly with Dean Stewart-Hunter particularly prominent. Jonathan Lansdale was soon testing the Peacehaven keeper, Alieu Secka, with a fierce free kick after Mike Williamson had been fouled just outside the penalty area. Lancing's early dominance saw Matt Daniel beating two defenders only for his well struck shot to hit the side netting.
Michael Death was next to threaten the Peacehaven goal but Secka got down well to prevent Michael getting his shot away. Peacehaven then came close to taking the lead when a corner was only half cleared , the ball dropping nicely to be volleyed goalwards only for it to strike the upright. Michael was then guilty of a mistimed tackle resulting in an injury to a Peacehaven player forcing him to be carried off with an ankle injury.
No yellow card followed but this was more than compensated for by the referee later dishing out a total of 8 yellow cards (4 to Lancing, 5 to Peacehaven ) and a red to Peacehaven's Brandon Kilula, late in the game.
Peacehaven finished the first half strongly but they were wasteful in front of goal failing to take advantage of some good opportunities. The second half saw a lot of fouls and stoppages of play. Neither side could establish a rhythm and the game did not come to life again until late on.
New signing Stephen Jackson, making his debut, replaced Michael Death and was soon using his pace to test the Peacehaven defence bringing the best out of the Peacehaven keeper. Stephen's persistence paid off as, with less than 10 minutes to go, he pressurised Secka forcing him into an error, but as he was about to plant the ball into an empty net he was brought down by Kilula who conceded a penalty and earned a straight red card.
Jonathan Lansdale made no mistake from the penalty spot. Once again Lancing succumbed to an inability to close a game out. Peacehaven counter attacked twice in added time, coming close to scoring.
The second attack led to a disputed corner which Lancing failed to clear after a couple of attempts and Jake Le Grange was able to apply the finishing touch to earn his side an away point. A final attempt on goal with a header from Alex Bygrave brought a finger tip save, the keeper putting the ball over the crossbar. A clear corner but missed by referee and his assistant.
Frustration for the Lancers as they let a lead slip late on. Much to admire in terms of hard graft and determination and an encouraging debut from Stephen Jackson, but a lesson to be learned about how to preserve a lead in the latter stages of the game.