LANCING Football Club battled to their first league victory of the season on Tuesday evening with a far from convincing win at home to Hailsham.
Lancers went ahead in fortuitous fashion after only seven minutes. Wayne Joseph’s lay-off picked out Lee Denyer, whose inswinging cross struck Hailsham’s Steve Earley and wrong-footed visiting keeper Harry Duff.
Darren Boswell then had a well-struck effort saved, Graham Martin’s header was ruled out for offside and Richard Hudson poked wide as Lancers looked for a second.
They were made to pay for these missed chances just before the half-hour mark when Ryan Alexander curled home an equaliser from a free kick.
Parity did not last long, though, and Joseph, Lancers’ best player on the night, turned and lashed home an effort from 20 yards 10 minutes before the break.
Hudson rattled the bar in the second half, before Lancing keeper Alex Bryant denied both Shane Saunders and Steve Dallaway to keep his side ahead.
Lancers needed a third goal to settle the encounter and it arrived 15 minutes from time through substitute Adam Hunt, who headed home a Joseph cross with his first touch.
Lancing boss Martin Gander said: “We need to get better certainly, we’re playing at about 40 per cent at the moment, again we were wasteful in possession and missed too many chances.
“It’s still early days but getting a good start is important. I’m not that happy with the performance but a win is a win and we’re off the mark.”
Lancers host Combined Counties League South Park in the FA Cup preliminary round on Saturday (3pm).
Lancers then travel to Selsey in the league on Monday (11am) if there is no FA Cup replay.