A youthful O’s side lost out late on in the latest Final Third Development League encounter with Gillingham this afternoon.
Orient trailed to Luke Holmes’ first half effort, before Scott Kashket restored parity and despite both sides creating chances, the Gills took the victory thanks to Jake Sellens’ free-kick.
After a slow start it was Sam Sargeant the first goalkeeper to be called into action when he comfortably held a 20-yard shot from Holmes.
But fresh from that the O’s created their first opening when a lovely ball through from Kashket found Sandro Semedo and the winger was pushed behind by Gills goalkeeper Tom Hadler.
However, it was the visitors who took the lead on 18 minutes when Holmes produced a neat finish from just outside the box.
That proved to spur the O’s on though and Shola Oladipo had two chances in as many minutes to level, however, both efforts were weak and comfortably dealt with.
But on 23 minutes the hosts were back level when Oladipo was released down the left and he managed to jink his way past several attempted challenges before squaring the ball into the box.
The ball was only cleared to Kashket though who thumped it into the top corner.
Kashket went close minutes later as he saw another effort tipped behind by Hadler after some good build-up play with Freddy Moncur.
Sargeant got his fingertips to Elliott List’s cross, but the ball parried back into the path of Jake Sellens, however, his attempted backheel was comfortably gathered by the O’s goalkeeper.
Gills skipper Charlie Webster then went close as his effort from just outside the box struck the post, before Semedo forced Hadler to tip one shot behind, while another was just off target.
Nick Brown replaced Montel Agyemang at the break and it was the Gills who created the better opportunities of the second period.
Sargeant diverted a Sellens effort behind and from the resulting corner, Emmanuel Osafebe’s header was tipped over by the keeper.
Osafebe created another opening for the Gills down the right, and his pull back found Sellens, only to be met by a smart stop from Sargeant and he once again denied the same man after he had found some space just outside the box.
Chances came more and more sporadic as the encounter came on but when Jordan Gibbons won a free-kick just outside the box, Sellens was there to direct it low into bottom corner past Sargeant to give the Gills an 82nd minute lead.
And that was how it remained as the O’s lost out. They will hope to end the Development League with a victory on Friday when they host Peterborough United, with a 12noon kick-off.
ORIENT: Sargeant, Judd, Trialist (Alderson 75), Agyemang (Brown 46), Trialist, Nickolaou, Semedo, Moncur, Oladipo, Kashket, Trialist.
SUBS: Clark, Card, Owusu.