PNE get back on track
By Patrick Goss. Last Updated: 18/12/04 6:30pm
Preston got their season back on track with a fine 2-1 win against West Ham.
North End's fans have suffered two successive derby defeats to Wigan and Burnley, so a win was vital for morale - and goals from Eddie Lewis and Brian O'Neil gave them a fine lead going into half time.
Nigel Reo-Coker got The Irons back into the game, but Preston's defence stood firm and the hosts took the points.
Richard Cresswell had brought a save from Stephen Bywater, but the West Ham defence did not clear their lines fully and Lewis smashed home from 25 yards out for the opener.
Marlon Harewood could have levelled, but for a fine save from Andy Lonergan, back in the side after injury.
Bywater was forced into a good save to deny Lewis a second long-range goal, but could do nothing when Tomas Repka gave the ball away and O'Neil thrashed it home.
Reo-Coker was brought on at the break, and he had an immediate impact when he converted Repka's low cross.
Lewis had clearly worn his shooting boots, and he hit the bar with another effort from range, with Bywater saving well to deny Chris Sedgwick from the follow-up.
Harewood wasted a fine chance to level, but Preston's defence stood firm and Richard Cresswell could have made the victory more emphatic in the final minutes.
Sky Bet Championship
|20||Brighton and Hove Albion||44||46|