FOLKESTONE moved up to third place in Division One South yesterday (Saturday) with four unanswered goals at Merstham, who were previously unbeaten at home.
Josh Burchell put them ahead after 16 minutes but the damage was done by two own goals in three minutes, with Gareth Graham’s mishap in the 69th minute quickly followed by another from Dean Hamlin. Simon Austin completed the scoring.
Maidstone slipped back to fourth after their run of seven successive league wins came to an end with a 1-1 draw at Whyteleafe. It looked as if a Graeme Andrews goal midway through the second half would keep the Stones rolling, but Stefane Gnamore levelled it with ten minutes left.
At the other end of the table, improving Crawley Down climbed off the bottom by beating Whitstable 3-0 and collecting their first Ryman League points on home turf at the sixth attempt. Fraser Logan broke the deadlock in the 56th minute, Brannon O’Neill doubled the lead six minutes later and Luke Blewden made quite sure.
Walton & Hersham are the new bottom club, though in unfortunate circumstances. They were leading by an early Victor Kiri goal when their game against Corinthian-Casuals had to be abandoned ten minutes after half-time. Casuals striker Kane Sergeant suffered a broken leg and required lengthy treatment on the pitch before he could be moved.
Whitehawk lost three points during the week when they were punished for fielding an ineligible player on the first day of the season but a 3-1 win at Croydon Athletic put them back where they started. Paul Armstrong’s seventh-minute penalty was followed by a goal from Ben Godfrey on 26 minutes. Peter Afoloyan put Croydon back in it six minutes later and the scoreline stayed unchanged until Armstrong netted another spot-kick with three minutes left.
The other three games were all 1-1 draws with the hosts scoring first. Jones Awuah converted an early penalty for Burgess Hill, who then hit the bar through Lloyd Cotton. Danny Buckle headed the equaliser in the 64th minute.
Eastbourne came closer to turning Scott Krkwood’s 40th-minute goal into victory but Joe Taylor rescued Ramsgate with four minutes left.
Chipstead cut it even finer: Rob Watkins equalised in added time at Hythe, for whom Richard Sinden had netted in the 76th minute.
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