BBFC 3-0 Bexhill Town Saturday 5th May
Battle Baptists did their chances of winning the Macron ESFL Premier Division a power of good with a commanding win thanks to two goals from top goal-scorer Dean Boyd and another from Joe Brister.
Facing three games in five days, the Baptists were quickly on the offensive as the game began in slightly controversial fashion when Adam Higgins-Gooch ran behind the Bexhill defence and the Bexhill keeper handled the ball outside his area to stop the striker from scoring. After a delay much longer than the game was old, the colour of the card was yellow.
Playing some of the best football of their season the home team pressed for goals and the Bexhill custodian was kept busy, making two great saves before Medica Man-of-the-Match Boyd opened the scoring on the twenty-minute mark.
Higgins-Gooch fired a thunderous shot against the bar and full-back Adam Staplehurst saw a long-range effort deflect off both posts in a period dominated by Battle, whose goalkeeper Shaun Utting made a fabulous save just before the break to protect the slender lead.
The sun-drenched spectators at Battle Rec didn’t have to wait long after half time to see Battle extend a deserved lead. Again, Boyd was the marksman taking his season’s tally to twenty-two.
Boyd was rested ahead of a heavy schedule and his replacement Josh Pickering planted an excellent right-wing cross on the head of fellow substitute Brister running in at the back post for the final goal that keep Battle in the chase for the title.
BBFC 5-1 Hawkhurst Monday 7th May
Battle Baptists were made to work hard before eventually coming through comfortably with two goals apiece from Dean Boyd and Dale Vinall plus another important strike from Trystan Mayhew. The win sets up a Wednesday evening showdown with Hollington to decide the destination of the Macron ESFL Premier Division title.
In the searing Bank Holiday heat, the Baptists made five changes to the side that played just two days previously. The fresh-legged visitors were playing their last game of the season, making the test even tougher for Battle and scoring a deserved equaliser midway through the first half after Battle had been given the perfect start when Dean Boyd had rounded the keeper to score in the first minute.
Dale Vinall dispatched a penalty to regain the advantage shortly before the break, but not before Tom Cann had made a stunning save to stop Hawkhurst taking the lead.
As spectators beamed in the intense heat, Battle relieved the pressure with a superbly taken third goal from Trystan Mayhew as he combined with Boyd to slot home an accurate finish.
The last quarter belonged to the Baptists as both teams made changes. Vinall beat the wall with a twenty-five-yard free kick that bounced horribly in front of the Hawkhurst keeper before hitting the back of the net, and Boyd scored the fifth as his shot rippled down the net to the joy of the bumper Bank Holiday crowd.