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Billericay Town 2, Bath City 0
GOALS in either half from Jay May and Rob Swaine gave a depleted Billericay Town a welcome home win on Saturday.
Jay May showed continued signs of his return to form after an injury-affected season by heading Town into the lead four minutes before half-time.
And home skipper Rob Swaine sealed the win and a fine individual performance with his second goal in a week with four minutes to go to ease any late nerves at New Lodge.
It was an unattractive match which often lacked quality in the final third, but it was a performance of real endeavour from Billericay, who looked determined to arrest a slide of four straight defeats.
Play-maker Glenn Poole cut a frustrated figure on the sidelines as he was forced to continue his recovery from the head injury he suffered in last weekend's defeat to Dover.
That saw Brazilian Alex Cerdeira played in central midfield alongside the experienced Dave Collis, and they combined well to retain possession for the hosts on a soft and difficult playing surface.
Both sides took time to settle and neither keeper was worked until the 25th minute when ex-pro Charlie Griffin forced Nathan McDonald into a fine reflex save from 10 yards.
Charlie Taylor hit the side netting with a half-chance for Billericay before McDonald was again called into decisive action to block Tom Nichols' close range effort, after he had expertly controlled a ball over the top.
The half looked to be petering out when Junior Luke's long throw was only half-cleared and Collis reacted smartly to win the ball and cross for May to head home the opener.
May's acrobatic volley forced visiting keeper Jason Mellor into a good save on the hour mark, and the keeper was called into action again seconds later to keep out Luke's low drive.
Then Swaine made a telling block in the home penalty box after the impressive Kerry Morgan had cut the ball back for the arriving Sean Canham.
Bath pinned their hosts back late on as they searched for an equaliser, and only a fine double save from McDonald kept out consecutive shots from Chris Allen.
But with the game drawing to a close, McDonald hit a high ball towards the penalty spot and Swaine out-jumped the on-rushing Mellor to send a header high into the air and then down into the net to seal a win which moved his side up to 10th in the table.
Billericay (4-4-2): McDonald; Rodgers, Swaine, Wild, Anderson; Luke, Collis, Cerdeira (Halle 71), Lechmere (Bangura 82); May, Taylor (Benjamin 71).
Echo MOM: Rob Swaine (Billericay Town).