Rye win nine-goal thriller

Liam Upton struck twice in the last 10 minutes to give Rye United a 5-4 win over St Francis Rangers
Liam Upton struck twice in the last 10 minutes to give Rye United a 5-4 win over St Francis Rangers
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Rye United emerged victorious in a nine-goal thriller at The Salts on Saturday.

Liam Upton struck twice in the last 10 minutes to give the Quarterboys a dramatic 5-4 win at home to 10-man St Francis Rangers in Sussex County Football League Division One.

Both clubs were playing their first game for four weeks as a result of all the recent wet weather and the prolonged period of inactivity perhaps showed in the defending, if not the finishing.

Charlie Pitcher gave St Francis a fifth minute lead, but Ade Olorunda equalised eight minutes later and was then scythed down for a penalty which Ben Billings converted to put Rye ahead in the 18th minute.

Pitcher equalised for St Francis five minutes after that and although Rye went back in front with a 26th minute goal being claimed by Evan Archibald, the visitors made it 3-3 in the 29th minute through Tom Barnes.

An Aaron Walsh penalty in stoppage time at the end of the first half after Rye debutant Marc Munday was booked gave St Francis the edge at the break, yet the Haywards Heath-based side had Daniel O’Farrell sent-off within three minutes of the restart.

Rye had to wait until the 81st minute to make their numerical advantage count as Upton scored their second spot-kick of the afternoon to make it 4-4 and the same player grabbed the winner just two minutes later.