The Seagulls progress to the FA Trophy 1st Round proper with a hard fought 0 – 1 win away to league rivals Welling United, courtesy of a Gethyn Hill strike early in the second-half.
Weston started positively, keeping the ball well, passing amongst themselves and not giving Welling a sniff of possession. Captain Dayle Grubb looked bright with his dribbles early on, having a shot being blocked in the 12th minute as he cut inside.
Grubb fed Gethyn Hill just outside the box, the in-form striker cutting onto his left yet the shot was blocked by a Welling defender. A few minutes later, Grubb’s free-kick delivery towards the back post was narrowly missed by Jake Lee, the ball bouncing underneath the forward’s foot.
Jacob Cane nodded a Greenslade free-kick down for Harvey Smith, whose audacious overhead kick went wide of the post. Bradley Goldberg went close for Welling just before half-time, his low shot from 20 yards hitting the outside of the post and going out for a goal-kick.
Weston took the lead within a minute of the restart when Cane intercepted a pass on the halfway line, Grubb raced onto the loose ball, occupying three defenders as he drove towards goal. He laid the ball off for a waiting Hill just inside the box, who struck his shot in past the Welling keeper.
Welling were then forced to come out in search of an equaliser. Goldberg forced keeper Luke Purnell into a save low down to his right.
Weston almost doubled their lead, when Grubb cut inside and passed into Hill’s feet. The Welshman’s instinctive first-touch flick fed Grubb, who looked to speed past the defender but his left-foot shot was blocked.
Welling continued to push, Eliot Bradbrook nodded towards the target from a cross, with Purnell stretching to parry the ball off the bar, Weston’s keeper then made another excellent save late on in the game, diving to his right to parry a shot from Goldberg.
However, Weston held on well to secure their place in the FA Trophy 1st Round, with the draw set to be announced on Monday.
FT: Welling 0-1 Weston (Hill 47)
Weston XI: Purnell, Harper, Greenslade, Cane, Pope, Smith, Reid, Diallo, Hill, Grubb(C), Lee. Unused substitutes: Laird, Kington, Welch, Plummer, Rapai.
MOTM: Whole Team – Excellent performance from all the Weston boys today, from Luke’s two match-winning saves in the second half to Geth’s well-taken second half goal.