WORTHING UNITED Football Club’s perfect home league form this season came to an end at home to Mile Oak on Saturday.
The Mavericks had won all ten of their home league matches prior to Saturday but the defeat allowed Wick & Barnham to move to within three points and they also have a game in hand.
United boss Nigel Geary is looking forward to the challenge of trying to win the title and said: “It’s game-on now really as Wick won again on Saturday.
“They have a game in hand on us and, if they win that, we will be level on points.
“We have eight games left, with seven of those against teams in the bottom half of the table.
“Wick still have to play Mile Oak twice and Oakwood, so they have a tough run in.
“Our form has dipped in the past few weeks, so it’s important we get some positive results in the upcoming matches to keep the gap at the top.”
The visitors started well and nearly went ahead inside ten minutes but Jamie Watts failed to get on the end of a Richard Hudson cross.
Hudson and Watts once again linked up when Watts failed to find the target.
The closest the home side went to opening the scoring in the first half was when Sam Blundell was sent through on goal but he was thwarted by Oak defender Asa Turley-George.
It was Oak who took the lead 11 minutes after the break when Hudson slotted the ball past the on-rushing United keeper Matt Grimstone.
United were the better side for the next 20 minutes and nearly equalised through Jack Hayward.
The home side did level on 66 minutes when Blundell struck for the 16th time this season. A Wayne Joseph corner was met by David MacNeill and his header was parried by Oak keeper Aaron Stenning and Blundell netted the rebound.
United went in search of a winner following the equaliser and nearly went ahead when Hayward’s shot was cleared off the line.
Blundell then went within a whisker of giving United the lead on 75 minutes but his shot went just wide.
Despite the home side’s constant pressure, it was Oak who took the lead for a second time with ten minutes left. Hudson curled a free kick over the wall and into the top corner.
The Mavericks went in search of a leveller late on but they were unable to find it.
WORTHING UNITED: Grimstone; Hall, Stideford, Taylor, MacNeill; Hayward, Wotherspoon, Edwards, Joseph; O’Regan, Blundell. Subs: Schilt (Wotherspoon), Hassan, Evans.