BASILDON United boss John Higley praised his side despite seeing them crash out of the FA Cup to Thurrock, writes George Thorpe.
Goals either side of half time from striker Charlie Stimson plus another from Leroy Griffiths saw Thurrock cruise through.
However Higley was full of praise for his players saying just reaching this stage of the cup after nearly folding at the end of last season shows great progress.
Higley said: “I thought we were brilliant. It shows how far we’ve come this year.
“The boys gave everything out there and if we’d taken our chances in the first half it could have been different.”
The away side had the majority of the possession but struggled to break down a Basildon team who put up a stern defence.
Stimson should have opened the scoring in the 11th minute when Luke Wanadio’s cross found him free in the box, but his weak shot rolled straight to Steve Brown.
Basildon counter-attacked well with one breakaway nearly resulting in a goal as Greg Akpele put a speedy Dave Reynolds through on the left, but his shot had too much venom on and sailed over.
Continuous pressure from Thurrock finally saw the first goal arrive in the 44th minute as Lawrence Yiga’s free kick was spilled by Brown and tapped in by Stimson.
Basildon stormed out in the second half and could have made it 1-1 if it were not for a brilliant point blank save by Wil Viner from Akpele’s volley.
Thurrock doubled their lead in the 59th minute when Stimson made a run down the left, shrugging off several defenders, before passing the ball back for Griffiths to score.
The hosts’ heads dropped and two minutes later it was 3-0 as substitute Fola Orinlonishe ran from the halfway line into the area before sending the ball to Stimson to slot home.
This caused Bees goalkeeper Brown to lose his cool and he was sent off for picking up two yellow cards inside of 30 seconds after he reacted angrily when a corner was awarded to Thurrock.
Basildon United: Brown, Lee, Reynolds, Shaw (Hanness 63), Hind, Smith, Bridgeman, Ismail, Akpele, Salmon (Langdon 66), Bill (Marsh 46).
Thurrock: Viner, Griffin, Dicks (Walster 63), Yiga, Obamwonyi, Thurgood, Wanadio (Orinlonishe 56), Woodward, Griffiths, Stimson, Perkins.
Echo MOM: John Hind (Basildon United).
Concord 1, Needham Market 0
CONCORD moved into the next round of the FA Cup as an 18th minute goal from Harry Elmes gave them a 1-0 victory at home to Needham Market, writes Jack Smith.
The Beachboys began the brighter and went close when skipper Tony Stokes headed a Adetayo Osifuwa cross onto the crossbar.
They continued to turn the screw and Danny Spendlove tested keeper Alex Archer with a left-foot strike.
And it was a sweet move which saw them break the deadlock as Stokes flicked a reverse pass to Elmes and he dummied the Archer before slotting the ball home.
Needham could not muster much going forward but were kept busy at the back.
And they conceded a penalty when Archer brought down Osifuwa, but the keeper made amends by saving the resulting penalty from Stokes.
But it didn’t matter as the host saw out the game to book their spot in the next round.
Concord: Jordan, Coyne, Glozier, Cowley, King, Easterford, Spendlove, White, Osifuwa, H Elmes, Stokes.
Echo MOM: Nicky Cowley (Concord Rangers).
Bury Town 3, Canvey 0
CANVEY were knocked out of the FA Cup following their worst performance of the season at Bury Town.
Just as in the league match between these sides two weeks ago, Canvey were punished for not taking the chances in the first half.
Danny Heale fired a good chance over for the Gulls 10 minutes before the break, and Bury hit the post minutes later with Luke Ingram's header before they took the lead with a disputed penalty.
Richard Orlu’s foul appeared to be outside the box, but the referee pointed to the spot and Billy Clark converted. Heale was booked for protesting against the decision.
Clark got his second shortly after the hour marked with a well-placed shot, and the hosts put the tie to bed with seven minutes to go when substitute Mitchell Gilbey conceded possession on the halfway line and Sam Reed finished following a quick counter attack.
Canvey: Jones, Miller, Dumas, Edgar (Hudson 79), Hayles, Orlu, Gordon (Gilbey 79), Dobinson, Heale (Hart 72), Curran, Chatting.
Echo MOM: Ryan Edgar (Canvey).
Leiston 5, Southend Manor 1
SOUTHEND Manor’s hopes of repeating last season’s brilliant FA Cup run were ended with a heavy defeat in Suffolk.
Reining Ryman One North champions Leiston were too strong for the Essex Senior League side, and Chris Baddeley’s 80th minute goal was scant consolation.
Leiston only held a single-goal advantage at the break with a 35th minute effort from Gareth Heath.
But Leon Ottley-Gooch double their advantage 10 minutes after the restart, and further strikes from Rhys Henry, Gareth Heath and Jordan Heath sealed their passage into the next round.