THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE
Whitton United 3
Diss Town 1
This was always going to be a test of how much progress Diss Town had made in the nine weeks since being beaten 8-0 in the reverse fixture.
And the Tangerines passed the first 45 minutes with high marks — their dominance rewarded with a one-goal lead.
However, their promotion-chasing hosts scored three second-half goals to win for the 15th time this season, though to scoreline was slightly flattering.
Diss have been dangerous from corners in recent games and in the 12th minute of this game they won one down their left wing.
Ryan Beeston sent the kick curling towards the far post, where Jake Gathercole ran in and from eight yards out he and met the ball with a firm downward header to score his first goal for the club.
Jake Hayhoe, in his 13th game for the club, has been in tremendous recent form and made his first save in the 20th minute when he tipped a 22-yard free-kick from Kevin Inglis over the bar.
The first key decision of the game came in the 31st minute when Diss’ Virgilio Leitao ran on to a through ball and was challenged by goalkeeper Ross Welton diving to his left.
Welton got his hand to the ball in the dive as he sent Leitao sprawling to the floor.
The referee awarded a penalty, but after strong home protests he consulted his assistant and the decision was overturned, with Diss instead given a corner.
Beeston crossed from the right and Tom Ramsay sent a header against the bar.
A second goal at this stage would have been a fair reflection as Diss continued to have most of the attacking play, with Whitton conceding a number of free-kicks in dangerous positions.
Four minutes later a deft back header from Deivyas Andriuskevicius to a Beeston free-kick found the arms of Welton.
Whitton pressed early in the second half and Ramsay covered well, after Heyhoe was forced to come to the edge of his penalty area to attempt to clear the danger, diverting a goalbound shot from Zehnn Young to safety.
Duane Wright headed against the woodwork as Whitton continued to attack, but by the hour mark Diss had created more chances of their own.
Leitao had a shot deflected wide, Beeston was narrowly over with a well-struck shot, and a combination of Welton and Josh Hitter cleared off the line after the ball was given away to Leitao on the edge of the penalty area.
Ramsay required treatment and was waiting to come back on in the 66th minute when Whitton broke down the middle and exploited the space left, with Liam Wales running through and sliding his shot into the corner of the net for the equaliser.
Up the other end, Andriuskevicius struck the outside of a post after Leitao linked up with Nuno Nogueira down the right wing.
The next crucial moment came in the 77th minute when following an aerial challenge involving several players from both teams near to the penalty spot Whitton were awarded a penalty and Inglis sent his low shot into the corner of the net.
The scoring was completed two minutes later when Diss gave the ball away in a dangerous position and Josh Stevens scored from an acute angle.
Diss (13th) will look to return to winning ways when Cornard United (18th) visit Brewers Green Lane tomorrow (3pm).