Bradley Stevenson scored the only goal as Welling United dug in to claim all three points against Tonbridge Angels.

They were indebted to their young back three and goalkeeper, Jack Sims, for keeping the visitors at bay in a tense game between two teams looking for points to stay away from the lower reaches of the table.

As was the case at Bath City one week earlier, Welling started under pressure and could have been behind early on. Aaron Smith-Joseph hooked over from a cross by Ricky Modeste. Sims then made his first save of the game when Ibrahim Olutade’s shot was blocked into the path of Adam Lovatt who hit it first time but the Welling custodian did well.

Modeste continued to have joy down the right wing and crossed but Olutade could not get any power in his header and Sims caught it comfortably.

At the other end Aaron Barnes sent over a cross that Daniel Carr could only glance wide with his head before a Tom Beere free kick cleared the wall but went beyond the far post.

Stevenson was only in the team as a result of an injury to Dipo Akinyemi in the warm up, and he took full advantage of his opportunity when opening the scoring. Arthur Penney sent a long accurate pass over the Tonbridge back four and Stevenson brought it down wide on the left, eased his way infield and slotted it beyond former Wing, Jonathan Henly.

Kristian Campbell then cut in from the left and hit the ball low across goal with the outside of his boot, just missing the far post.

Barnes then went on one of his trade-mark mazy runs and Stevenson looked sure to score again before Jerry O’Sullivan made a brilliantly timed last gasp tackle.

Play was stopped for an injury to Campbell and restarted with an uncontested drop-ball with the referee insisting that the Welling players retreat ten yards. Tonbridge played it into the area that Campbell would normally cover and got it across to Lovatt but his deflected shot was saved by Sims.

Shortly before half time Welling won a free kick on the edge of the penalty area but Che Krabbendam could not get enough pace on the shot to worry Henly.

After the interval, Ade Shokunbi was sent clear by Carr but Henly stood up tall and made the save before Tonbridge regained their grip on the game. Olutade beat the offside trap but Maxwell Statham raced across to force him to cut back and his shot sailed over the bar and out of the ground.

Carr had a header from a Barnes cross saved easily then Tom Parkinson didn’t bother Sims too much at the other end.

Sims made his best save to thwart Olutade after parrying Beere’s shot before the Angels’ centre forward spun and shot wide with Beere pleading for a pass across goal.

Although still enjoying the majority of the possession, Tonbridge struggled to get past the determined Wings back three of Brad Pearce, Penney and Statham but Sims did have to make one more save when a deep cross found Modeste but he was unable to beat the inspired Wings goalkeeper.

Welling United: Sims, Barnes, Penney, Durojaiye, Pearce, Statham, Shokunbi, Stevenson, Carr (Stewart 81), Krabbendam, Campbell. Subs not used: Ezennolim, Ilic, Richards.