Sun too hot for Leverstock Green to handle

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Leverstock Green were brought back down to earth after their 8-1 win last week as they were well beaten at Sun Sports in Saturday’s SSML Premier Division game.

Leverstock struggled to cope with Sun’s no-nonsense direct style and non-stop work rate, eventually slipping to a 4-1 defeat.

There were a couple of early chances for the home side, with Brima Johnson shooting wide after receiving a crossfield ball down the right in the fifth minute, and Green keeper Craig Garrett deflecting a shot from Karl Penny wide when the Sun striker was clean through a minute later.

Leverstock suffered a blow with the loss of Callum Wright to a knee injury after 15 minutes, but the contest continued to be largely even until midway through the half. Sun should have taken the lead on 19 minutes when a cross from Johnson found Dom David in front of an empty net, but he put the ball over the bar.

However, on 26 minutes Sun took the lead from a corner that was needlessly conceded. Garrett’s punch didn’t clear the penalty area, and the loose ball wasn’t cleared, allowing Penny to shoot home from close range.

Worse was to follow on 33 minutes when Ashley Lewis had the ball 25 yards out, and under no pressure at all Lewis was able to plant a low shot into the corner of the net for a 2-0 lead.

In first half stoppage time Leverstock were undone by a ball hit straight down the middle as Penny chased it, outpaced Joe Horwood and ran on to shoot past Garrett for a third goal that left the Green side with a mountain to climb in the second half.

There was little sign of a Leverstock revival after the break, in fact Sun should have increased their lead as firstly Penny hit the post with a shot on the hour, and David shot wide from a good position two minutes later.

Luke Preedy brought the first save of the afternoon out of Sun keeper Ross Hampton in the 68th minute as his shot was turned wide.

On 77 minutes Louis Bircham got to the bye-line and pulled the ball back for Chris Blunden, but a defender slid in and stabbed the ball to safety.

Finally on 81 minutes Leverstock got off the mark as Blunden shot home from just inside the box to ignite faint hopes of a recovery.

However, that was as good as it got for the Green side, and in the last minute Sun substitute Clement Asanti was put clean through and lifted the ball over Garrett before finishing into the empty net to complete a fully-deserved 4-1 win for the home side.

Leverstock will look to get back to winning ways on Tuesday night when they visit bottom side Bedford in a league match.

Sun Sports: 1. Ross Hampton, 2. Dan Bourne, 3. Gary Wallace, 4. Edwin Twesigomwe, 5. Scott Bonner, 6. Sam Warrell (12. Dan Griggs 59 mins), 7. Jack Johnson (15. Junior Bushiri 78 mins), 8. Ashley Lewis, 9. Dom David (14. Clement Asanti 66 mins), 10. Karl Penny, 11. Brima Johnson. Sub not used: 16. Nathan Pooley.

Leverstock Green: 1. Craig Garrett, 2. Damien Cruickshank, 3. Joe Horwood, 4. Gavin Smith, 5. Jack Halcomb, 6. Tommy Walsh (14. Lee Faulkner 71 mins), 7. Timi Salako (16. Reece Cameron 66 mins), 8. Curtis Donaldson, 9. Chris Blunden, 10. Louis Bircham, 11. Callum Wright (12. Luke Preedy 15 mins). Sub not used: 15. Liam O’Keefe.