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Spencer at the double as Hornchurch see off Margate

Michael Spencer lets fly, and  scores the first goal for their 3-2 win over Margate at Bridge Avenue yesterday. Pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO Michael Spencer lets fly, and scores the first goal for their 3-2 win over Margate at Bridge Avenue yesterday. Pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO

Sunday, December 15, 2013
11:52 AM

Ryman Premier: Hornchurch 3 Margate 2

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Two sensational strikes from Michael Spencer kept Hornchurch top of the Ryman Premier as they grinded out a win against Margate at Bridge Avenue yesterday.

Urchins weren’t at their best and fell behind wice before Spencer popped up again with another piece of magic to earn a big win for Jimmy McFarlane’s side.

Margate were under new management for this match as ex-AFC Wimbledon boss Terry Brown had taken over, but it was Hornchurch who had the first chance but Payne could only fire straight at Craig Holloway following Frankie Curley’s pass.

The visitors then took the lead as Warren Whitely drifted in from the left and found the net as his shot slid underneath Inigo Echepare in the Hornchurch goal.

Their lead last just four minutes later as Spencer scored his second of the season.

Curley and Payne were involved in some head tennis before Spencer showed supreme technique to get over the bouncing ball and slice his effort over Holloway and into the top corner.

It was an excellent strike and ensured Urchins weren’t behind at the break, but Margate retook the lead just 13 minutes into the second period, where the wind caused both teams all sorts of problems.

Elliot Styles misjudged a throw and allowed Moses Ashikodi in behind but Alex Bentley cleared his deflected cross off the line. However, Phil Walsh was on hand to fire into the empty net.

But that lead lasted just two minutes as Margate’s Wayne Wilson inexplicably passed back to goal without looking and Payne rounded the keeper and equalised.

Two minutes later and the Bridge Avenue crowd were on their feet to applaud another wonder strike from Spencer to round off an amazing six-minute period.

Curley won the ball back, passed to Spencer who cut inside his marker before lashing into the top corner from 25 yards out to spark delirious celebrations.

Urchins were battling for everything but still needed keeper Echepare to stay on his toes as he saved well from Margate sub Jack Sammoutis.

George Purcell then had a chance to extend the lead but Holloway did well to push his low effort wide before the Urchins keeper had a let off 10 minutes from time as he dropped the ball under no pressure, but Matt Bodkin curled over.

Leigh Bremner was introduced with just minutes remaining and almost made an instant impact only to fire into the side netting after a good solo run.

Three minutes were added on, but Hornchurch stood firm to secure a massive three points, which could be decisive come the end of season.

Hornchurch: Echepare, Starkey, Bentley, Styles, Hayles, Curley, Rook, Rainford, Payne (Bremner 88), Purcell (Eyong 85), Spencer.

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