Midweek football action for Brockenhurst, Hythe & Dibden, New Milton, Fawley AFC, Bashley and Blackfield & Langley
SIX local clubs were in mid-week Wessex Football League Premier and Wessex League Cup Second Round action, with Brockenhurst and New Milton Town the only victors.
In the premier division, table-toppers Brockenhurst beat Shaftesbury by three goals, while Hythe & Dibden’s shocking start to the season continued with a 5-0 loss to unbeaten Hamworthy United.
Both Bashley and Blackfield & Langley lost penalty shootouts in the league cup, while New Milton Town stormed into the next round with a resounding six-goal demolition of Fawley AFC.
Brockenhurst moved five points clear at the top of the table with a superb 3-0 win over Shaftesbury. But keeper James Mayo had to be alert from the very first minute to produce a jaw-dropping save to deny former Christchurch striker Ash Pope in the first minute.
Badgers sprang into life, and Silvano Obeng was in the thick of the action, playing in exciting right-back Conor Ings, who shot wide, before the number nine missed a chance of his own when it appeared easier to score.
The breakthrough came minutes before the break when a poorly defended corner fell kindly to Obeng, who smashed the ball home from close range.
Within 10 minutes of the restart, the division’s top scorer Obeng scored his 13th strike of the campaign after some clever footwork which sent the defender the wrong way before a sublime finish.
The game’s final goal came after a good shot from Leon Borges struck the post. The rebound was struck goalwards by 17-year-old Christie Ward, but his blocked shot spilt to Matt Sheedy, who beat former Christchurch keeper Lewis Gunstone-Gray.
Hythe & Dibden’s league run stretched to eight straight losses, with a 5-0 defeat to Hamworthy United, who have won all but one game so far.
The half-time whistle came with the hosts just one goal down after a fortuitous opener from Eddie Hodge that looked more like a mis-hit cross.
After the break, however, Hamworthy pulled away with further goals from Hodge, Lee Francis and Dan Cann.
Matt Neale rounded off the scoring with the best goal of the game, a stunning top corner shot from 25 yards which left the keeper with no chance.
The most thrilling Wessex League Cup Second Round match featured New Milton Town, who romped to a six-goal win over Fawley AFC, thanks mainly to an eight-minute hat-trick from George Deem.
The hosts started well, and they led from the seventh minute when Aaron Scott scored with a 25-yard rolling shot that beat a slow-to-react Joe Coombes before the evergreen Ash Booker made it 2-0 just before the break.
Ben Cooper added a third before Paul Turner introduced Deem, who scored with his very first touch. Chris Long floated a delicious cross into the area for an unchallenged Deem to head across the goal into the side netting.
New Milton’s Luke Dennison saved a penalty before Deem immediately went up the other end and beat the offside trap before caressing the ball past the keeper.
He completed the hat-trick from the penalty spot, sending Coombes the wrong way, as New Milton sealed cup progression.
Bashley battled back to equalise against Andover Town three times, the final strike coming with the last kick of the game, but their heroics ran out in a penalty shootout with Town winning 4-3.
The first half remained goalless until the 45th minute, when Josh Bertie punished a defensive error. Then, however, Tommy-Lee Higgs broke away to level the scores at the end of injury time.
The home side took the lead in the 70th minute after another poor clearance allowed David Jerrard to score.
Andover remained in the lead until the last minute of regulation time when the game exploded into life with three goals in three minutes. Lewis Ross levelled the match with a free-kick before Andover powered up the other end and regained the lead in the 91st minute. Bashley responded straight away, and Harry Bunce bundled the ball over the line after a Lewis Aimson throw-in.
Andover refused to be denied, and they buried four straight penalties to progress to the next round.
There was similar excitement in Blackfield & Langley’s game against Moneyfields, with an 88th-minute equaliser from Sholing FC loanee Rafa Ramos cancelling Josh Bailey opener.
Unfortunately for Blackfield, they missed their opening two spot-kicks as Moneyfields scored all but their third to kick out the Watersiders.