THE LIONS won their full-blooded derby at home to Selsey 3-1 to go fourth in division one of the Sussex League.
As early as the first minute, Pagham could have gone ahead - but Daren Pearce’s free-kick was saved by Sam Joyce.
The Selsey keeper was the busier one early on, with shots coming in from all angles.
It wasn’t that James Binfield in the Lions goal didn’t have anything to do as Ollie Haggard kept Selsey on the attack.
The first goal came just after the quarter-hour. With acres of space, a virtually-unmarked James Ford headed home to give the Lions a deserved lead.
This triggered a period of dominance for the Lions with Scott Murfin and ex-selsey stalwart Max Thoms both having good chances.
Matt Wood’s return to Nyetimber Lane saw the former Lion shooting from long range on more than one occasion, but he couldn’t find the target.
Binfield had to be at his best on 35 minutes to foil an on-rushing Graham Bush.
The Lions found themselves down to ten men on 36 minutes as Lee Bradshaw had to leave the field for treatment. Only after a considerable time did Connor Geoghegan come on to replace him.
Joe Briggs could have doubled the lead, only for his shot to go over the bar.
Joyce denied Murfin more than once and another ex-Lion, Luke Kilner, shot wide before the interval.
The second half started on a positive note for Selsey. A couple of corners saw Pagham on the back foot, with a goal-line clearance stopping an equaliser.
Ryan Cox’s overhead kick seven minutes in was acrobatic but ultimately harmless as it sailed over the bar. The hour mark saw Selsey boss Adam Hinshelwood make a double substitution - the two Dans, Hegarty and Martin, came on, with Wood and Kilner going off.
Selsey went on an attacking spree, with Haggar and Ross Woolf both taking on the Lions back four. Haggar had to leave the field on 67 minutes with a suspected side strain. On came Barney Colwell.
A tremendous reflex save from Joyce on 70 minutes was followed two minutes later by Briggs scoring the Lions’ second with a sublime strike.
A nervy last 11 minutes was on the cards for the Lions when Hegarty made it 2-1 with a fine strike. But Howard Neighbour made sure for the Lions with his 20th league goal of the season - a superb strike on 87 minutes that wrapped up a convincing win.
PAGHAM: Binfield, Hawker, Ford, Pearce, Booker, Bradshaw (Geoghegan), Briggs, Thoms, Neighbour, S Murfin (Temple), Cox. Subs: N Murfin, Williams, Hallett.
SELSEY: Joyce, McFarlane, Broadbent, Williamson, Cody, Lee, Woolf, Kilner (Hegarty), Bush, Wood (Martin), Haggar (Colwell). Sub not used: Britton.