Tuesday January 27 – Ryman League Division One South
South Park 2 – 3 Horsham
Horsham’s 3 – 2 victory at South Park on Tuesday night was the clubs third win on the bounce and has lifted them off the bottom of the table and to within 2 points of fourth and fifth bottom sides, Walton Casuals and Hythe Town.
The remarkable turnaround under joint-managers Anthony Storey and Cliff Cant has seen 12 points amassed in the six games played under their control; the team had only gained 17 points from their previous 24 games prior to them taking the reins.
In goal Horsham always had one of the divisions’ best keepers in Gareth Williams; they now have an organised unit in front of him unlike the days when Williams was left helpless as five, six and seven goals were scored past him.
Up front there is a real goal threat in Trevor McCreadie who has taken the weight off Tony Nwachukwu’s shoulders, scoring in each of the last three games.
Another ‘new’ addition, Tom Graves, joined the ranks for the trip to South Park after rejoining the club earlier in the day. Graves has over 250 appearances for the Hornets against his name and started the match in the centre of defence in place of Tom Gilbert who had not recovered from the injury he picked up against Walton Casuals.
Horsham fell behind to a 24th minute Chris Smith goal but rallied quickly with Richie Welch equalising from an effort that the South Park keeper should have stopped.
The half time lead for Horsham was assured by the goal of the game on 40 minutes.
Nwachukwu headed on for the lively and determined McCreadie who took one touch before hitting an unstoppable volley past the home keeper Campbell to the delight of the travelling Hornets fans.
After 20 minutes of the second half South Park were level and again the goal was scored by Chris Smith who had posed a threat all night. A few matches ago, having been pegged back, the team would have folded but this group of players now show resolve and character that allowed them to push on and get a winner.
The winning goal was a little fortunate in that the referee decided that an attempted clearance by a South Park defender that came at speed of his boot and straight into the arms of keeper Campbell was a back pass. From the indirect freekick, just a few yards from goal, the ball was touched to Nwachukwu who smashed it into the net passed the row of Park players on the goal line.
The journey back from Reigate was a pleasant one for the Hornets, management and supporters with another vital three points in the bag.
This Saturday sees the visit of Redhill to Gorings Mead. Redhill sit second bottom of the league, a place below the Hornets, so another win is much needed if The Great Escape is to continue.
Photo by John Lines