Pagham roared to a second successive victory against Worthing United, but the visitors proved a very different side the one who’d been thrashed at Nyetimber Lane weeks earlier. This time it was 3-1 in division one of the Sussex League.
With eight changes from the Worthing starting XI that capitulated 9-0 in the teams’ recent cup clash, John Foley’s mix of experience and university players put up a much sterner fight against John Price’s Lions.
A cross from former Pagham transfer target Tom Connelly in the second minute fed Connor Strong, but his header rocketed across the Lions goal and out of play.
Scott Murfin and Josh Clack created openings for the Lions while the two Jameses - Ford and Binfield - were kept busy at the back for Pagham.
The first goal came on the quarter hour as Connelly’s turn and shot evaded Binfield.
Joe Briggs went close for Pagham and shots were pinging in at both ends, with neither side able to convert into goals ... until just after the half hour, when James Temple headed home from a free-kick that had pinged back into the area from the left.
The second half began with the Lions looking for scoring opportunities, Briggs and Clack both trying to find a way past United keeper Steve Allfrey.
Ben Buckland was having a good game on the right, with crosses into the area threatening United.
Pagham’s second goal came from Ford on his return to the side. A free-kick gave him an opportunity he wasn’t going to miss for his second of the season.
United’s defence held firm on the hour as Clack saw his shot charged down. Temple twice went close before adding his second of the game as a scything run through the defence ended with a snap shot that put the Lions 3-1 in front with 20 minutes left.
Briggs picked up the only booking of the game and was then substituted, with Ruben French taking his place.
A Pagham corner was cleared off United’s line and Karl Westbrook made his season’s debut for the Lions, stepping up from the reserves to replace Temple, while Calum Cutler was replaced by Tom Jefkins.
Westbrook could have marked his debut with a goal as his header went wide of the upright, the Lions keeping up the pressure on their opponents.
French’s late long-range shot was forced out for a corner.
PAGHAM: Binfield, Buckland, Ford, Pearce, Booker, Hawker, Clack, Cutler (Jefkins), Temple (Westbrook), S Murfin, Briggs (French). Sub: Hallett.
Pagham 0 Lancing 1
RUR Charity Cup R3
John Price’s side went out of the cup as lowly Lancing won with an early goal at Nyetimber Lane.
Having struggled this season in the league, Richard Whittington’s visitors had nothing to lose against a Pagham side fresh from their win over Worthing.
In the eighth minute the formbook went out of the window as Lancers’ leading scorer Dominic Shepherd struck home a Charlie Romain cross to leave the Lions licking their wounds.
Pagham stepped up a gear, but despite efforts from Briggs, Pearce and Temple, the away side stayed in front.
Pagham were denied a penalty on 17 minutes as James Temple went down under pressure, thr referee unmoved. A succession of corners and free-kicks broke the play up as the first half degenerated into a series of set-pieces.
A golden chance for Pagham came five minutes before the break as Joe Booker headed over from close range.
After the interval, Pagham having to clear a Romain cross, while Lancing keeper James Shaw was forced to thwart a Lions onslaught.
Owen Callaghan forced just as good a save from Pagham’s James Binfield as both sides hunted for the next goal.
With 20 minutes left, Pagham took off Howard Neighbour and Briggs for Ryan Cox and Tom Jefkins.
Scott Murfin’s run and shot deserved a goal while Jon Melia had a fine shot for Lancing, but Binfield again saved.
A superb strike on the left by Ryan Cox was only just rescued by Shaw.
The only booking of a competitive game came with Lancing’s Ollie Davis seeing yellow for a challenge on Temple.
PAGHAM: Binfield, Hawker, Ford, Pearce, Booker, N Murfin, Briggs (Jefkins 69), Cutler, Neighbour (Cox 69), S Murfin (Westbrook 85), Temple. Subs: Bradshaw, Hallett