Late flurry seals semi-final spot for Mile Oak

Jamie McKenzie struck as Mile Oak sealed a semi-final spot in this year's SCFL Division 1 Challenge Cup on Saturday. Picture: Stephen Goodger
Jamie McKenzie struck as Mile Oak sealed a semi-final spot in this year's SCFL Division 1 Challenge Cup on Saturday. Picture: Stephen Goodger

Mile Oak Football Club struck three times in the final 30 minutes as they sealed a spot in the semi-finals of the Southern Combination League Division 1 Cup on Saturday.

Goals from Enzo Benn, Craig Stevens and Jamie McKenzie helped Oak to a 3-0 home quarter-final success over Storrington.

Having lost a crucial promotion battle at East Preston last time out, Mile Oak boss Ben Shoulders saw this win as a perfect response and is hoping his side go all the way this season.

He said: “I’m really pleased we’ve managed to reach the semi-finals. It’s a competition I’ve targeted since the start of the season and it’s all going good so far.

“It was just what we needed after last week’s defeat. It was hard to take but we played well this week, created a lot more chances and could have scored a lot more than the three we did.”

McKenzie should have opened the scoring on the half-hour. Joseph Benn’s through-ball sent him clear and he rounded Swans keeper Gary Elliott but then fired into the side netting.

Controversy then came five minutes before half-time. Referee Dave Smith awarded Storrington a penalty but, after consultation with his linesman, reversed the decision.

Mile Oak finally broke the deadlock on the hour. Joseph Benn’s corner was met by a bullet header from his brother Enzo to give the home side a 1-0 lead.

Oak then got a second five minutes later. Once again Storrington failed to deal with a Joseph Benn corner and Stevens was on hand to head home.

Substitute Remi Coates got on the end of an Enzo Benn knockdown but blazed over as Mile Oak threatened to add a third.

The home side then sealed a semi-final spot ten minutes from time. Coates saw his initial shot parried by Elliott but McKenzie was quickest to react and slotted home. Oak travel to Storrington in the league on Saturday.

MILE OAK: A.Stenning; Early, E.Benn, Gillingham, Stevens; Wedge-Bull, J.Benn, Austin-Slade; Gould, McKenzie, Wotherspoon. Subs: Coates (Gould), Curd (Wotherspoon), Symes (McKenzie).

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