Heath’s campaign in this season’s Sussex Senior Cup ended in a narrow 2-1 defeat in the 93rd minute at the hands of Saltdean United at the Leisure Centre on Tuesday night.
The first half was an evenly contested affair. Heath started and ended the half well and the visitors had the better in between. Max Howell had the first shot at goal on 12 minutes when he received a pass from the right, took a touch but then shot over the crossbar from a tight angle. Minutes later George Cousins replicated his team-mate’s effort, shooting high over the bar.
The visitors created their first opening midway through the half when Jamie Brotherton hit a right foot half-volley that dipped over a defender but was safely caught by Kieron Thorp on the goal-line. Curtis Gayler had two attempts in quick succession. The first, when he cut in from the left but blasted his effort high and wide of the goal, and his second, a long range free kick that went narrowly wide of Thorp’s right post.
In the closing stages of the half Tim Cook had one shot deflected wide of the post and another went straight into the arms of Nathan Stroomberg on the goal-line. Dean Wright got onto the end of a Lee Carney through ball, but shot inches wide of the right post and it remained scoreless at the break.
The visitors took the lead minutes into the restart when a corner on the right was played to the far post to Will Berry, who rose above everyone to power a header back across the goal into the net.
On the hour Tom Bold whipped a ball into Cousins, who headed just wide of the Saltdean goal, but the game swung in favour of the visitors when, with 15 minutes remaining, Scott Weller, who’d only been on the field for 5 minutes, was judged to have committed a red card offence and the Bears were down to 10.
Strangely, with a player down, Heath then went on to dominate play and pulled a goal back on 82 minutes when Cook and Howell combined well down the right flank with the latter drilling a low shot across the goal into the far corner for his fourth goal in 8 appearances.
Just as the game was looking like going into extra-time the visitors played a long ball into the penalty area. The ball was headed against the crossbar, it rebounded off Ben Bacon, and in for a somewhat fortunate goal. There was still time for Charlie Pitcher to have a snap-shot at goal from the edge of the box but his effort flew over the bar and so ended another Senior Cup campaign for the season.
Next Tuesday the two sides meet again when Heath travel to Saltdean in the Sussex RUR Cup, the third meeting of the two sides already this season.
BBH : Thorp, Jones (Weller 70), Findlay, Waddingham, Flack, Howard-Bold, Carney, Cousins, Cook, Wright, Howell (Pitcher 85). Unused subs : Fox, L.Riecker.
Saltdean United : Stroomberg, Whitehead, Rogers, Allen, Jones, Graves, Gayler, Berry, House, Brotherton, Kinkene. Subs : Street, Marshall, Hurley, Bacon.
BBH Player of the Match : Max Howell
Match Report by : Andy Crisp
Attendance : 52