Weston progressed to the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup following another strong performance on the road, as Basingstoke Town were the latest side to be defeated by The Seagulls.
However, Basingstoke put in a resilient display and provided a good attacking threat to keep Weston on their toes.
But it was The Seagulls who took an early lead in the fourth minute, Dayle Grubb’s inswinging corner flashed across the goalmouth as far as Reuben Reid. The experienced striker found himself completely unmarked and he headed into the net to give The Seagulls a dream start.
And just under ten minutes later, Scott Bartlett’s side doubled their lead. Reid again found himself in space and he played a perfectly weighted through-ball in behind the Basingstoke defenders. Jordan Bastin showed great anticipation to latch onto the pass before rounding the goalkeeper and slotting the ball into the empty net.
After falling two behind, Basingstoke started to find their way back into the game and they reduced the arrears with what appeared to be a fortuitous goal. Town danger man Ezio Touray headed in a cross from Ben Mason, although it appeared as though Touray had fouled Max Harris in the process.
If Weston were unlucky to concede that goal, The Seagulls can count themselves lucky that a strike from a Basingstoke forward crashed off the angle of post and bar shortly before the interval.
With Basingstoke reeling from this missed opportunity, Weston rubbed salt into the home team’s wounds by again doubling their lead. Reid was again involved as his low cross from the left-hand side was diverted into his own net by the unfortunate Scott Armsworth to see Weston go in 3-1 up at half-time.
At the start of the second-half, Bastin nearly notched his second of the afternoon as he hit a 25 yard drive narrowly wide of the post. The Seagulls were then immediately punished as the extremely lively Touray grabbed his second of the afternoon to halve the deficit once more.
However, any concerns Weston would leave Winklebury without the victory were put to bed with a fabulous fourth goal for The Seagulls. A well-worked corner routine involving Bastin, Lloyd Humphries and Grubb saw the latter lift the ball into the path of Marlon Jackson, who stooped to head past the stranded goalkeeper.
This proved to be the final goal of the game with around a third of the game to go, and despite a few half-chances for both sides, Weston comfortably saw out the rest of the game to seal their place in the Second Qualifying Round of the FA Cup.
We now look forward to the draw for the next stage, which will be published at 1pm on Monday, 5th September. National League South sides will be added and the draw will be regionalised.
Weston: Harris, Thomas, Tunnicliff (Laird 72), Avery, Humphries, Jagger Cane, Dodd (Jones 78), Bastin, Grubb, Jackson, Reid (Watts 62). Unused subs: Purnell, Murray, Griffith, Bak
MOTM: Jordan Bastin