A disappointing performance saw Lewes suffer their fourth consecutive league defeat, as the Rooks were unable to build on recent encouraging performances on a frustrating afternoon at Staines reports Tom Harper.
Darren Freeman named an unchanged side following last week’s unfortunate defeat to promotion-chasing Kingstonian, and included new signing James Hammond on the bench.
The Rooks should have taken an early lead, as Alex Laing played in Richard Pacquette, who saw his goal-bound effort blocked by covering defender Erivaldo Felix. Staines had plenty of pace going forward, and the impressive Michael Kalu went on a purposeful run through the middle before seeing his low shot well held by Chris Winterton as the hosts began to enjoy the better of the play.
Lewes still looked dangerous in the final third at times though, with Laing escaping the attentions of Darren Purse to send a curling effort just over the crossbar. The hosts made the most of this missed opportunity by taking the lead after 28 minutes, as Kalu got across his marker to powerfully head a Jack Bennett corner into the net off the underside of the bar.
Staines doubled their lead just four minutes later, with Ahmed Abdulla converting a Felix cut-back from close range after an impressive run from the right-back. The Rooks should have got back into the game just before the break, as Pacquette headed over at the far post after a corner had not been cleared.
Freeman made a change at half-time, with Hammond coming on for his debut in place of Leon Redwood, who had struggled at left-back against the pace of Kalu throughout the first half. This change saw a slight re-shuffle, with Henry Muggeridge moved to left-back and James Fraser playing on the right of midfield.
The second half saw few chances of note for either side, as Staines seemed content with their 2-0 lead, while Lewes were unable to really test Jack Turner in the host’s goal, despite their best efforts. The closest the Rooks came to pulling a goal back saw Muggeridge have a long-range shot fumbled wide by Turner with just under 20 minutes remaining.
The hosts ensured there would be no Lewes come-back by adding a third goal after 78 minutes, as Ashley Lodge was on hand to finish from close range after a cross from the left had been flicked on into the danger area.
This was a disappointing result for the Rooks, whose improved performances coming into the game suggested that a win was just around the corner as they looked to close the gap between themselves and the rest of the bottom four.
Unfortunately, they were unable to cope with the pace of the Staines wide players and never really looked like getting back into the game after conceding two goals in five first-half minutes.
Lewes will hope to put this disappointment behind them when they travel to East Thurrock United next Saturday, kick-off at 3pm.
Staines Town: Turner, Felix, Bennett, Brewer (Vancooten 82), Purse, Gough, Wanadio, Lodge, Cox (Hutchinson 82), Abdulla, Kalu.
Unused Subs: Churchill, Thomas, McAllister.
Booked: Bennett, Brewer, Abdulla.
Lewes: Winterton, Brinkhurst, Redwood (Hammond 46), Fraser, Freeman, Malins, Muggeridge, Cotton, Pacquette, Laing (Gayler 82), Ben El-Mhanni (McCreadie 67).
Unused Subs: Breach, Strong.
Booked: Malins, Pacquette.
Referee: Stephen Bates