Jason Mann takes charge in Horndean's five-goal thriller victory over Cowes Sports
Horndean's assistant manager Jason Mann enjoyed a 3-2 win against Cowes Sports at Five Heads Park.
Mann stepped up to take over from flu-ridden Michael Birmingham for the encounter with the Wessex Premier Division strugglers.
‘We had to win ugly on a very heavy pitch,’ said Mann.
‘Despite the conditions, we kept trying to play football.
‘It was a good three points that keeps the teams above us on their toes.’
Bobby Scott gave Horndean an early lead with a lob over the goalkeeper.
The Yachtsmen levelled when the home team switched off at the back, but Mark Smith restored the hosts’ lead before the break.
Another breakaway Cowes goal pegged Horndean back midway through the second period.
Scott, however, with the best goal of the game - heading home a Smith cross - put his side ahead once more.
It was his 21st league and cup goal of the season in 23 appearances - putting him level at the top of the Wessex top flight goalscorers list with Hamble Club’s Nathan Lynch and Harry McGrath of Bashley.
The latter fired a first half hat-trick at the weekend in a 7-2 caning of Shaftesbury.
Horndean escaped a rush of blood to the head by goalkeeper Lloyd Thomas.
With the ball going out of play in the 79th-minute, he rushed out and barged over a Cowes forward to concede a penalty.
‘I don't have a clue what he was thinking about,’ said Mann.
‘Luckily, he redeemed himself by saving the penalty.’
As a result, Cowes slipped to a fifth successive league defeat while Horndean are now up to fifth - just three points adrift of third-placed AFC Portchester.