Derby delight for Hornchurch
Eyong goal is enough for victory
Hornchurch 1 Billericay 0
Urchins ended 2012 on a high with derby success at Bridge Avenue.
Tambeson Eyong’s first-half goal was enough to separate the two sides and lifted Jimmy McFarlane’s men to the giddy heights of eighth place in a congested Conference South table.
The hosts went close in the first minute when Lewis Smith’s shot was deflected wide.
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Joe Woolley made a comfortable save to deny Rob Swaine, before opposite number Sam Beasant kept out a Frankie Curley header at the other end.
Leading scorer Leon McKenzie fired narrowly over before the only goal arrived on 28 minutes.
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Andy Tomlinson’s free-kick was headed back by McKenzie to Eyong, who fired home from just outside the box before celebrating wildly.
Smith went close to doubling Hornchurch’s lead early in the second half, shooting just past the far post.
And McKenzie went even closer, sending a first-time shot from Eyong’s cross against the inside of a post, before Smith’s follow-up was tipped wide by Beasant.
Curley saw a well-struck volley blocked on the line before Billericay’s Charlie Taylor fired over and Woolley denied Sam Lechmere.
The visitors were reduced to 10 men on 79 minutes when Joe Benjamin, on the field for only a few seconds, was shown a straight red card for a reckless tackle on Eyong.
And their hopes of salvaging something from the game came to nothing as Elliot Styles, Reiss Noel and the fit-again Paul Goodacre held firm in the Urchins defence.
Hornchurch travel to Welling on New Year’s Day looking for revenge after their 3-0 home defeat against the high-flying Wings on Boxing Day.
Hornchurch: Woolley, Bentley, Reynolds, Tomlinson, Goodacre, Noel, Eyong, Curley, McKenzie, Smith (Gray 90), Styles.