Brighton and Gillingham make FA Cup progress

A round-up of today’s games around the South East

Brighton celebrate after Kirsty Barton scored against Spurs in a league game on Jan 19 2014 (Photo: Geoff Penn)

Kirsty Barton again scored a cup goal for Brighton (Photo: Geoff Penn/B&HA)

Brighton and Gillingham joined Portsmouth in the fourth round of the FA Cup, winning their delayed away ties against Plymouth Argyle and Nottingham Forest respectively.

The Seagulls, currently fifth in the Premier League South, beat South West Combination side Plymouth Argyle 4-0 in Devon to secure a visit to Coventry City at the Ricoh Arena in round four.

Gillingham, second in the Premier League, won 1-0 at Nottingham Forest to land a home tie against either Preston North End or Super League newcomers Yeovil Town.

Brighton eased to a predictable victory in the South West, but were only one goal ahead at half-time, courtesy of Tammy Waine‘s strike.

Emphatic

But they picked up momentum after the break, scoring three times, through Kirsty Barton, Rebecca Merritt and Kim Whitcombe.

Each side hit the woodwork, but Brighton ended up emphatic winners, and march on to the fourth round, and a tie against fellow Premier League side Coventry.

Meanwhile, Gillingham enjoyed two pieces of good news, beating Forest thanks to a first-half Charlotte Gurr penalty and then learning that Premier League title rivals Cardiff City had dropped two points at home to Lewes.

The 1-1 draw was an excellent pick-me-up for the East Sussex side, who had gone out of the FA Cup to Portsmouth last Sunday.

It was a daunting visit to the Premier League leaders, who have lost only once all season. But like their visit to the then leaders, Gillingham, before Christmas, when they inflicted the Kent club’s only defeat of the season so far, Lewes showed no fear and earned a creditable draw.

Nikki Payne scored the goal that took Lewes level with East Sussex neighbours Brighton in mid-table.

Portsmouth‘s hastily arranged Premier League match at Coventry was postponed, but the Hampshire side did learn who their opponents would be in the FA Cup fourth round.

They will be away to surprise package Crystal Palace, who beat Derby County 2-0 in their rearranged third-round tie.

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Chichester City reached another Sussex County Cup final, beating Hassocks 4-1.

Free-scoring Chichester brought their total in the competition to 16 in two games, thanks to Kally Ambler, with two, Lucy Challen and Jade Widdowson.

They will face either Brighton or Worthing Town in the final on March 13.

University of Portsmouth‘s Hampshire County Cup semi-final at Fleetlands was postponed.

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Alana Garratt and Krissy Howlett celebrate during Parkwood's victory over Dartford Feb 16 2014 (Photo: CK Portraits)

Krissy Howlett, congratulated by team-mate Alana Garratt, scored a hat-trick for Parkwood (Photo: CK Portraits)

Parkwood Rangers picked up where they had left off after a month’s lay-off with a 5-1 victory over Dartford which stretches their lead at the top of the SECWL Premier Division to four points.

But it was at a cost – debutant Charlotte Peters suffering a serious knee injury two minutes into her debut.

Assistant coach Andy Morton said she got her boot stuck in the ground and dislocated her knee, causing a lengthy delay before she was taken to hospital.

In her absence, Parkwood tore into their Kent rivals, racing into a 3-0 lead within 20 minutes, courtesy of Krissy Howlett‘s opening double and one from Hayley Thomas.

Dartford pulled one back before half-time, but in the second half Howlett completed her hat-trick and the win was sealed by Emily Vaughan.

Premier League Aylesford were on the end of a cup upset when Division One West side Seahaven Harriers beat them 4-3 in the Chairman’s Cup.

And Chichester City Reserves extended their lead at the top of Division One West, cruising to a 7-1 victory over Wivelsfield Green.

In the Kent Division, Teynham Gunners pulled further away from the bottom group thanks to a 5-3 win over Sheppey United.

And Horsham Sparrows leapfrogged Worthing Town Reserves into third place in the SCWGL Women’s Division, winning 5-0 at Bognor Regis in a fixture brought forward to fill a rare gap in this congested season.

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