FOOTBALL: STORM Brian did little to halt Highgate’s FA Vase progres at a wind swept Rushden and Higham United.
Goals from Scott Turner and Lei Brown proved enough to see the visitors comfortably through to the second round for the first time in the club’s history.
Gate entered the game on the back of a confidence boosting midweek Birmingham Senior Cup win at Coventry United.
With Trevor Edwards missing, there was a recall for Nathan Pulisciano at right back while Reece Staley moved over to the opposite flank.
Gate had recorded emphatic wins over Ellesmere Rangers and Pershore Town in the earlier two rounds, scoring 13 goals in the process.
But conditions at Rushden’s Hayden Road ground were not conducive to quality flowing football with little prospect of a further goal fest.
The home side were quickly out of the blocks as skipper Jed Ainge made a nuisance of himself down the right.
Ainge’s presence meant leading scorer Dylan Wilson beat Brad Catlow to the ball, but his attempt on goal went wide of the keeper’s left post.
Gate went close on a number of occasions and were unlucky not to be awarded a penalty when Lei Brown was blocked off by the Rushden’s keeper.
Highgate did take the lead eventually when Rickards’ corner came down off the cross bar to leave Turner with a simple 45th minute tap in.
The second half saw Gate up their game and take a stranglehold on proceedings.
Brown doubled Gate’s lead on 65 minutes when making the most of good build up play between Rickards and Staley.
Adaggio went close to further extending the advantage after beating Swailes only for the finish to drift agonisingly wide.
Chances came and went for the visitors who eventually held out to win by a comfortable two goals.
Highgate are next in action on Saturday when they face MFL new boys South Normanton Athletic.