Rocks sink Sudbury to make it three wins in eight days
Bognor won their third game in eight days thanks to James Fraser's late winner in a rain-affected clash with AFC Sudbury at Nyewood Lane.
They were without Gary Charman through an ankle injury but Thomas Byrne returned to the bench and new signing Lorenzo Dolcetti, a 20-year-old Italian midfielder, was among the subs. Dan Beck was also missing and Darren Budd got a start in midfield.
Early on, Dylan Barnett’s punt up field found Ollie Pearce but as he got into the box he was stopped by a defender.
Calvin Davies played in Pearce and his cross bounced in the box before Jimmy Wild laid it off for Barnett to cross, but Pearce’s header flew wide.
Rocks keeper Dan Lincoln had to stop the onrushing Aaron Greene as he smothered an attempt. A cross by Jordan Blackwell had to be punched out by Lincoln.
Barnettchipped one into the area. James Fraser met it with a header but it was punched away by Marcus Garnham.
Wild blasted over the bar following a neat through ball from midfield, then James Baker smashed the ball high and wide for the visitors on nine minutes.
Budd’s chipped pass found Pearce but his instant shot with his left boot flew inches wide.
Pearce’s cross fell to Fraser but he scuffed his chance wide on 15 minutes.
Pearce’s free-kick curled nicely on to the head of Chad Field, who forced Garnham into a fingertip save.
Wild was tripped and another free-kick was awarded to Bognor on 20 minutes. Barnett struck the kick and it dipped and bounced awkwardly in front of the goalkeeper, who divered it for a corner.
A long ball and high bounce almost beat Lincoln, but he managed to save the day.
A long throw by Lincoln into Sudbury’s half found Pearce on the run but he went to ground under a challenge by Ryan Henshaw. Claims for a free-kick were ignored.
Pearce’s corner was headed clear, a Budd shot was blocked and Sami El-Abd’s attempt from close range was deflected away by the goalkeeper as the Rocks pressed.
Adam Tann slid in from behind and tripped Wild in a Bognor counter-attack. Tann received a yellow card.
Davies’s cross was deflected out for another corner. Pearce’s kick sat up nicely for Alex Parsons who powered a header beyond the goalkeeper on 41 minutes.
Fraser had a shot beaten away by Garnham and at the other end, an Eagle cross was only just diverted over by Barnett.
Parsons beat his marker before crossing from the right but it was belted clear as Bognor started the second half brightly.
Baker’s through-ball rolled away for a goal kick as Sudbury pressed but lacked a killer instinct in the final third.
Davies found Parsons down the right with a long ball. Parsons beat his man but his cross was feeble.
Doug Tuck’s through-ball set up Fraser but he miscued it and soon Parsons found Wild, who powered a header just over the bar.
Wild was replaced by Byrne on 62 minutes.
Davies’s pass forward saw Parsons beat his man before letting fly with a fierce cross. Neither Pearce nor Byrne couldn’t get on the end of it.
Rocks brought on James Crane for the hard-working Budd on 70 minutes and Sudbury brought on Sam Clarke and Sam Bantick for Jordan Blackwell and Greene.
Pearce shot low, forcing Garnham into a stop.
Lincoln gathered a Bantick cross on 74 minutes. Then a throw saw Pearce turn and shoot but it was comfortably saved by Garnham.
The rain began to pour with 15 minutes to go and Bognor were having to work hard at the back.
Sudbury equalised on 80 minutes. Bognor failed to clear their lines and a nasty ball into the area by Clarke ended with Jack Newman capitalising on the loose ball and slotting low into the bottom corner.
Bognor found a second wind and regained the lead on 82 minutes. A pass down the right found Parsons and his pinpoint cross found the leaping Fraser, who fired in a header high into the net, sparking joyous scenes from the players and home support.
Ed Sanders replaced Tuck on 83 minutes.
Sudbury won a corner but Eagle’s kick was eventually cleared away by substitute Sanders.
Fraser found Barnett with a pass but Barnett’s low effort was well stopped by Garnham.
A cross from the right was headed out by Fraser to Clarke, who struck it on the volley but high and wide on 89 minutes.
Three minutes of added time was signalled and Pearce won the ball while laying on the floor before running on and firing at goal. Garnham got something on it as the ball hit the side netting.
Lincoln held on to a header late on as Bognor held on for around four minutes of stoppage time to secure the points.
The Rocks head to Staines on Tuesday looking to make it four straight league wins.
Bognor: Lincoln, Davies, Barnett, Tuck (Sanders 83), El-Abd (c), Field, Fraser, Budd (Crane 70), Wild (Byrne 63), Pearce, Parsons. Subs: Muitt, Dolcetti.
Report by Liam Goodley
Attendance - 511
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