Alex Pike believes Gosport Borough showed they are up for the survival fight after an impressive 2-0 win against Staines last night.
Ian Richardson and Mike Gosney hit second-half goals to win the Skrill South clash at Privett Park.
It was a huge lift for Borough as they look to climb clear of relegation trouble.
Manager Pike believes it was a statement of intent from his men.
He said: ‘I thought we put in a polished and professional performance.
‘The players showed they want to stay in this league.
‘They dug deep and wore their hearts on their sleeves.
‘We know we are in a relegation scrap and will continue to work hard.’
Gosport created the first opening on 10 minutes.
Tom Dunford whipped in a cross from the right and Jamie Brown was narrowly beaten to it by the goalkeeper.
Borough striker Tim Sills went close on 25 minutes, crashing a header against the crossbar.
The visitors threatened at the start of the second period and it took a superb double save from Ashmore to keep the scores level.
The keeper went full-length to push out a low angled drive from Louie Theophanous.
He then recovered quickly to make a point-blank save from Louis-Rae Beadle.
Ashmore’s good work was rewarded.
Dunford delivered a fine corner for Richardson to open his Borough account with a powerful downward header.
The goal took the sting out of Staines and Borough tightened their grip in the 77th minute as they doubled the lead.
Substitute Dan Wooden crossed low from the right and Gosney scored with an unstoppable drive into the bottom corner.
Borough are now off the bottom, above Dorchester.
Gosport: Ashmore, Woodward, Forbes, Brown, Richardson, Pearce, Dunford, Smith, Sills, Bennett, Gosney. Subs: Wooden, Williams, Wilde, Molyneaux, Barfoot. Referee: J. O’Brien (London)