Wickers stretch unbeaten run
By Trevor Knell
Hawkes and Irish at the double
This win for Wick and Ringmer’s 2-1 home win over Bexhill United means that Wick will finish the season in 5th place in the league table. With just Tuesday’s home fixture against Selsey remaining, Wick are 16 points adrift of the promotion places.
On a beautifully warm spring afternoon the match mirrored Wick’s league season. A cracking start meant that they were 2-0 within just 12 minutes and threatening to overrun the Barrowmen. Ash Hawkes and George Cody had ‘swapped wings’ allowing Cody, on the right, to hit a cross field pass to Hawkes, on the left. He gained control of the ball then produced a fantastic finish to put Wick into the lead with 10 minutes gone. Within 2 minutes Alex Kew popped up on the right and crossed into the center of the box where the waiting Hawkes went down under challenge from a Steyning defender. The resulting penalty was confidently despatched by Josh Irish, for his 28th goal of the season. 20 minutes gone and it could have been three, a shot from David Crouch hit the post.
From this point Steyning worked their way back into the game. Their outstanding player, striker Alex Townley started the game on the left hand side and seemed less effective than the more central role he had played in the previous meeting between the two sides. Just before have time Townley was in the centre of the pitch, 25 yards out when he scored a cracking goal to make the half-time score 2-1.
At the start of the second half a formational switch saw Townley in a more central role and he made his presence felt on the Wick defence. On 51 minutes a pin-point cross by midfielder Craig Knowles picked out Townley in the area and his header was only just over the bar. With 6 minutes left clever footwork from Town’s Dominic Taylor put a dangerous ball across the Wick goal to Townley who was a whisker away from finding the equaliser. It is at least 30 years since Steyning took any points home from Crabtree Park and they cannot have come closer than they did today.
Wick’s end of season run how stands as 4 games without defeat (3 wins) with one game left. The size of the attendance was, once again disappointing, despite being swelled by 10 Steyning Town supporters, stood by the away dug-out (admittedly people find other attractions on these warm afternoons). There is a large re-shuffle planned for the non-league pyramid for next season however the effects on Wick would appear to be minimal although it does seem increasingly likely that we will be welcoming local rivals Littlehampton Town to the Park once again!
Wick: Belcher, Eyres, Bingham, Beck, Northeast, Cox, Hawkes, Kew, Irish, Crouch, Cody. Subs: Hillier, Ediker, Linard.
Courtesy of Steve Cox