Dereham Town forced to play second fiddle as Bowers & Pitsea seal title
- Credit: Archant
Bowers & Pitsea secured the Bostik North Division title with a convincing 4-0 victory over Dereham Town on Saturday.
The visitors had to defend deep and get men behind the ball in the opening stages and in the seventh minute Quentin Monville delivered a dangerous cross from the right that was hacked clear.
Bowers had their first chance when Bradley Warner hit a low diagonal drive that forced Elliot Pride to concede a corner. The Magpies won a corner themselves in the 20th minute which was pushed out by keeper Andy Wilton to Matt Castellan who headed over when well placed.
The home side took the lead with their next attack, with James Thomas breaking down the left and delivering a low centre that David Knight fired home from close range. As they threatened again substitute Ben Sartain hit a powerful 25 yarder that forced Pride into a full length save.
Adam Hipperson then won a free-kick for Dereham in an advanced position on the left but Shaun Wones could not get enough power into his header from Rhys Logan's centre.
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However Bowers added a second on the break when Knight headed home Monville's centre from the right in the 42nd minute. On half-time Ryan Crisp's header from Logan's free-kick forced Wilton into a fine save and from the loose ball Wones clipped the bar.
After the break Plumstead had to be alert to turn Monville's cross away for a corner, from which Lewis Clark headed home to increase Bowers' lead to give Dereham a mountain to climb.
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In the 65th minute Thomas fired over the top when well placed as Bowers continued to dominate. Warner played a neat one two with Clark outside the box before firing over the top.
Dereham brought on young Charlie Dickerson for his debut before Pride made a great close range save from Sartain in the 82nd minute. The hosts did net their fourth in the 87th minute when Knight completed his hat-trick by heading home Warner's cross from the right.
Dereham: E Pride, L Johnson (C Dickerson 80), D Frary, D Frary, M Castellan, A Plumstead, R Logan, A Smith, R Crisp (J Forshaw 62), S Wones (D Beaumont 62), A Hipperson. Sub not used: O Willis. Ref: A Farmer. Attendance: 236.
Having long since banished any fears of relegation Dereham now have four more league games to play, starting with a trip to third from bottom Witham Town on Saturday (3pm).