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Kingstonian 3-0 Eastbourne Town

Kingstonian notched up a fine win at home to Eastbourne Town with two goals from Simon Huckle and a Bobby Traynor penalty.

After being denied twice on Saturday, Huckle hit back early in the second half with a header into the corner beyond stranded keeper Russ Tanner and then within two minutes half volleyed the ball from yet another corner off Tommy Williams.

And in the 34th minute Traynor shot beyond Tanner in from the spot after Dean Lodge once more was bought down.

With Ks finally sparking their season back into life after indifferent results another win was needed to gain three points in hand above the chasing pack, but it once again proved to be far from easy.

The game started with the home side attacking and it was not long before Lodge, breaking on the right, was felled by defender Luke Denton, who received a yellow card. The free kick seemed to be wasted until Paul Richardson failed to control the ball and Carl Wilson-Denis swooped in from the left. His pass went to Traynor who almost too casually struck it in towards the goal but was denied by Tanner.

At the other end Town then had a free kick and skipper Danny Simmonds' shot was deflected straight to a grateful Luke Garrard.

In the 19th minute Collins had to fight for a ball through the defence only to waste his effort with a wide ball. However Ks tried to up the pace and Wilson-Denis came in up the left to cross into the lurking Traynor but in time Tanner cut it out. At the other end a swivelling Peter Cooper saw his 10 yard shot go just beyond the left near post.

However Ks were starting to get back into former ways and too many passes went wayward. A conceded free kick though ironically then proved a turning point. A free kick on the right by Simmonds was wasted and from the ruins Lodge broke away upfield until cutting into the box Denton bought him down surrounded by defenders.

Referee Eric Mackerell had no hesitation in awarding the penalty and then gave Denton his marching orders with a second yellow card and then red. Duly up stepped Traynor who shot past Tanner diving full stretch the other way.

The first half saw a couple more chances going begging, and once more Lodge bought down. But the closest came from Simon Huckle in injury time as his free header bounced off the crossbar. Minutes earlier Greg Manton was equally remiss with a header.

After the break the old purpose of the season's start returned. In the 50th minute Huckle somehow found enough space to pass it to Lodge but Manton was able to clear it off the line with more than a hint of suspicion that the ball had actually crossed the line.

However this soon became history as minutes later Huckle headed towards the goal after a late cross by Lodge. Only a point blank parry by Tanner in the goal denied him as the ball spun behind for a corner. Williams shot towards the far post from the corner and up jumped Huckle again. This time Tanner was unable to do anything as the ball shot off and down from Huckle for the second goal.

Another attack and once again Williams stepped up to take a corner - only this time Huckle shot low to the roof of the net from five yards with Tanner stranded. Three nil up the home side continued to press forward. Wilson-Denis was unable to convert from Traynor's short pass before being replaced by Craig Mullen in the 64th minute. Huckle, meanwhile, going for the hat-trick, saw a shot converted rugby-style.

Next it was Williams to repeat the same feat as he picked up Mullen's pass in, off another cross from Lodge. Then Traynor shot wide with once again skill from Lodge - a feint off Rundell - left the defence exposed. A minute later a long throw from Wayne Finnie, having come on for the ever-impressive Adam Thompson, found Mullen and his header went wide off the near post from five yards.

Inevitable a well-beaten Town hit back but this was not to be a lazarene denial like Whitstable because substitute Jamie Salvidge could only shoot past the far post from a long way away.

The game ended with another off the line denial as Tanner parried away from Mullen and then Williams shooting wide and then in injury time Williams missing off Traynor.

If only Ks play like they did second half - with confidence and verve - then this league ought to have been a breeze because the skill and the confidence is there. The second half was proof enough: the first half was an example that it is was not.

Mon 6th Apr 2009
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Isthmian League Division One South
Traynor (pen), Huckle (2)
Eastbourne Town0
1Luke Garrard
2Jamie Beer
3Nick Rundell
4Adam Thompson15
5Max Hustwick
6Simon Huckle
7Liam Collins
8Tommy Williams
9Bobby Traynor
10Carl Wilson-Denis16
11Dean Lodge
12Neil Lampton
14Jon Coke
15Wayne Finnie4
16Craig Mullen10
17Luke Naughton
Match Report By
Michael Underwood