Gills net late in the second half to draw 1-1 with Tonbridge Angels.
Josh Chambers scored a late second half equalizer to give Gills a deserved share of the spoils against Tonbridge Angels at the Longmead Stadium on Tuesday night.
Francis Mampolo had put the hosts in front when a deflected shot made its way past Taite Holtam, and they nearly held out for victory, but Gills slowly began to ask more questions as the second half wore on and Chambers took his chance when he rounded the keeper to slot home from little over 12 yards.
Keith Millen took charge on the night and named a mixture of youth team players, first and second year pros and trialists.
Like the first-team, the `B` side played a wing-back system with Ike Orji and Stan Skipper on either flank. Josh Chambers offered support to Matty Macarthur and Ronald Sithole in attack.
After a fairly even opening ten minutes, a ball over the top resulted in Gills being awarded a penalty. Sithole refused to give it up and Nat Gibb, the goalkeeper, slipped, allowing Ronald half a chance to get there first. He did, was tripped, and the referee deemed the offence to be inside the box.
Chambers stepped up, but put the spot kick wide.
Moments later Chambers was involved again, this time he had the ball on the right hand side and crossed towards the far post where Sithole was waiting. He got a shot away but it was well blocked for a corner.
The initial ball was dealt with, but a second cross, having been gathered by Gibb, resulted in the keeper being stretchered off after being unintentionally kicked and requiring treatment. Toby Edwards replaced him in the Angels goal.
On 26 minutes the hosts, managed by Jay Saunders, took the lead when an effort from Francis Mampolo, from a tight angle on the left hand side, took a deflection and sent it over the helpless Holtam and into the back of the net.
Less than five minutes later and Gills had a good chance to draw level when Sithole, 20 yards from goal, received the ball from his right and had space ahead of him. He went for goal but sent his powerful effort just over the bar.
On 44 minutes Edwards, the Tonbridge sub keeper, made an excellent save to his right to deny Matty Macarthur. Gale played an excellent direct pass through the middle for the lively forward who turned, took a few paces before firing goalward. Edwards watched it all the way and palmed it wide for a corner which was too high and missed everybody.
H/T: Tonbridge Angels 1-0 Gillingham B
Gills bossed possession in the early stages of the first-half but were unable to find the breakthrough. A shot from Stan Skipper on 67 minutes went just over the bar, with the midfielder having cut in from the left to find space.
Eight minutes later and the visitors created their best opportunity from open play. Chambers beat the offside trap and chased a ball on the right side, his pass to Trialist inside the box was a good one but the striker failed to make desired contact and the opportunity went begging as a result.
With ten minutes to go, Gills did finally get the goal their efforts deserved when Chambers again beat the offside trap. The keeper came out to narrow the gap but lost out, and the midfielder kept his calm to round the stopper before finding the back of the net as defenders retreated.
In the dying seconds Trialist had a shot well saved before the follow up effort was brilliantly blocked.
F/T: Tonbridge Angels 1-1 Gillingham B
Tonbridge: Gibb (Edwards 23), Fielding (Vowles HT), Mampolo, Aransibia (Waring 71), Dabre, Puffett, Vincent, Greenidge, Meade, Velvick, Janneh
Unused subs: Higgs, Etherington, Hutchinson
Gills B: Holtam, Orji (Garrett 69), Gale, Giles, Taiwo-Pratt (Webster 55), Skipper (Trialist 55), Trialist, Trialist, Chambers (Woodliffe 85), Sithole, Macarthur (Trialist 55)
Unused subs: T Smith, Bayliss