HOT SHOT: Thomas strikes early for Invicta
TAYLER THOMAS’ seventhminute strike helped Folkestone claim their third Ryman League Division 1 South away win of the season on their first visit to Waterside Stadium on Saturday.
Teenager Thomas, who has extended his loan spell from Gillingham, got the winner when James Dryden put him through and he finished with a fine strike.
Neil Cugley fielded the same side that crushed Chatham 6-0 in the Kent Senior Cup but Josh Vincent knew his side were in for a harder game when a late challenge by Casuals defender Chris Robinson earned him a third-minute booking.
Thomas might have put Invicta in front a minute earlier but goalkeeper Craig Bradshaw saved with his feet and then referee Rob Allum waved away home penalty appeals when Matt Weston went down after a good run into the area.
Charlie Mitten touched Weston’s shot around the post and then saved again from the same player soon afterwards.
At the other end, Dryden volleyed over the bar and had another effort blocked by a defender, with Vincent’s followup saved by Bradshaw.
Walton’s best chance came when Jamel Carr’s strike bounced off the Invicta crossbar.
The game developed into a scrap in the second half with Invicta’s Kieran Byrne and Thomas both booked.
Tactics were changed and Jimmy Jackson switched to left- back when player-coach Scott Lindsey replaced Josh Burchell on the hour.
Walton continued to press and Mitten got down well to touch another effort around the post.
Chris Lewington then volleyed wide from the edge of the area, and James Everitt blocked from another effort three minutes later. Mitten also touched over Platel’s late header as Folkestone held on.
Invicta’s Simon Rainbow and Joe Neilson, back at the club after re-joining from Hythe, went on in the closing stages as the visitors won their first corner in stoppage time but that statistic didn’t matter – they had already done enough to secure the points.