Crawley faced a tough prospect in playing 2nd in the league, Lewes 2’s. Crawley welcomed Jonathan Lewis-Brown to the line-up for his first appearance of the season and had a few subs to ensure plenty of fresh legs on the pitch.
Unfortunately Fortress Hazelwick proved anything but at the start. Lewes 2’s carved up the Crawley defence seemingly at will despite plenty of effort from the Crawley defence. Before they knew it, they were already 1-0 down, quickly followed by a converted penalty stroke for 2-0. Crawley had chances of their own but were unable to convert their own penalty corners. Lewes maintained the pressure and followed up their first 2 goals with another 2 to make it 4-0. Lewes managed a fifth goal with a short corner strike coming off the brave Ian Berry's stick as he tried to block the shot, only to loop over the keeper. Such a Jammy Goal.
An earlier tactical switch at 4-0 down saw Kane Paterson come into the midfield and Alex Coote drop to sweeper. This seemed to revitalise Crawley, with Thomas Jarvis leading the way by always offering himself for the pass and Crawley grew into the game, despite conceding a fifth goal, they then managed to get one back with Liam Mulcahy bundling the ball home from close range, to go in at half time 5-1 down.
After half time, Crawley tried to get back into the game and had more chances, but were unable to show the lethality that Lewes had demonstrated in the first half. Chris Rockingham made some great saves to keep the score at 5-1, but also Will Doherty, playing out of position at left back, Simon Teale at right back also managed to resolutely keep the Lewes wingers at bay.
Crawley can take heart from there 2nd half performance, many other teams would of capitulated after that start but they played to the end and put the effort in and kept respectability to the score.
Many thanks to Scott Gibbons and Laura for umpiring
C Rockingham, Alex Foxcroft, I Berry, W Doherty, S Teale, T Jarvis, A Coote, K Paterson, L Mulcahy , Thomas Mackintosh, J Lewis-Brown, Scott Mansfield, Theo Hillman