Newhaven were left to rue missed chances after conceding an 89th minute equaliser in a 2-2 draw at Chichester City on Saturday.
The Dockers have now only won two of their eight away league games this season, and have thrown away seven points from winning positions on the road.
A shaky start from the visitors at Oaklands Park led to the home side taking a tenth minute lead as Morgan Forry’s long range strike gave Jake Buss no chance.
Newhaven levelled right on half-time through Mark Probert and took the lead nine minutes after the break as Jayson Sowter’s deflected shot deceived Anthony Ender.
Probert sent a penalty over the crossbar and the Dockers were made to pay as Joe Gromet bundled his way through a crowded box to level for the hosts, who also had a goal disallowed for offside shortly after.
Newhaven manager Paul Harrison returned from holiday and made two enforced changes to the starting line-up. Terry Gacias (injured) and Tyler Goatcher (working) were both unavailable so Jayson Sowter and James Rhodes returned to the side, having both missed the win against Lingfield.
Despite a heavy downpour an hour or so before kick off the pitch was playable, albeit boggy through the middle.
It took the away side a while to get to grips with the game and they found themselves behind just ten minutes in. A stray pass in midfield was pounced upon by Forry and he unleashed an unstoppable drive from 25 yards to give his side the lead.
Buss had to be at his best to deny a close range header and the follow up was blocked behind for a corner as the hosts applied pressure.
Once the visitors had settled they began to look after the ball better and created some openings. The best fell to Robinson who got in behind left back Lewis Prior but his shot was kept out by Ender.
It looked as though the hosts would head in to the break a goal to the good but Newhaven had other ideas and levelled right on half-time.
Robinson dodged a couple of tackles before finding James Rhodes on the edge of the box. Rhodes fed the ball to Probert and, with the home side appealing for offside, he coolly slid his shot past Ender for 1-1.
Newhaven used the momentum they had from the equaliser and went ahead themselves just nine minutes after the interval.
The visitors attacked down the left and worked the ball to Rhodes, who in turn found Sowter. The midfielder’s goal-bound shot took a big deflection and nestled in to Ender’s net, with him having dived the other way.
Newhaven then enjoyed a comfortable spell of possession and carved out a number of decent chances.
A low Rhodes free-kick somehow stayed out, despite the best efforts of three Dockers players. Daniel Murray’s cross-come-shot hit the far post and then hit Ender before the big goalkeeper stopped the ball from crossing the line.
Ryan Knight prodded over from close range, after a corner had fallen to him, but the best chance fell to Probert.
Robinson had his ankles clipped when through on goal and referee James Harding awarded a spot-kick. Probert stepped up but saw his penalty go sailing over the bar.
That was about as good as it got for Newhaven, but they were defending well and rarely looked threatened. That was until the 89th minute when the hosts found an equaliser.
A hopeful ball in to the visitor’s penalty box wasn’t cleared and Gromet bustled his way in to a shooting position before firing past Buss.
It could have been worse for Newhaven but Gromet’s stoppage-time goal was ruled out for offside as both teams settled for a point.
Newhaven: Jake Buss, Daniel Murray, Ryan Knight, Jayson Sowter, Greg Manton (c), Jon Trotter, Lee Robinson, Sean Breach, Mark Probert, James Rhodes (Simon Blaxall), Connor Jones (Dom Cole). Unused subs: Scott Edwards, Jason Goddard.
Referee: James Harding
|Ryan Knight||Yellow Card|