By Matty Hewitt
Gateshead picked up an impressive 1-0 away win at last seasons play-off semi-finalists Ebbsfleet United.
A battling first-half performance saw the Heed deservedly lead at the break before weathering a storm late on to move up to eight position.
The Heed has an early shout for a penalty as Sam Magri dived in on Steve Rigg but referee David Rock waved away the protests.
Corey Whitely fired an ambitious shot wide of the Aynsley Pears post after just seven minutes.
In an end to end opening, Elliot Forbes had a low shot blocked from the edge of the area.
The Heed opened the deadlock as Scott Boden slipped Tom White in who powered a shot in towards Nathan Ashmore, but the Fleet keeper parried his shot into the path of the onrushing Bush into the back of the net.
They had a great chance to double their advantage minutes later as JJ O’Donnell flashed a cross towards the head of Rigg, but the former Carlisle front man couldn’t direct his header goal bound.
Rigg then almost turned provider for Boden, rolling the ball to the edge of the 18-yard box, but the former Wrexham striker had shot blocked.
Darren McQueen’s acrobatic effort was the closest that the Fleet went in the first half, he chested Magri’s knockdown before firing an overhead kick over the bar.
The Heed created havoc going forward again, this time Robbie Tinkler clipped a ball around the back of the Fleet back line towards Rigg, but Ashmore was out quickly to close the shot.
Gateshead were unfortunate not to lead by a greater margin at the break, Greg Olley jinked inside from the left flank and flashed a dangerous shot across goal which Ashmore gathered at the second attempt.
The hosts came flying out of the blocks as Pears had to be alert to keep out McQueen’s low drive after the restart.
The lively Whitely then fired a free-kick over the Heed crossbar, after Olley brought down Sean Shields.
At the other end Molyneux then drove to the byline and fired a ball across towards Rigg whose shot was blocked by Magri.
The Heed had appeals for a penalty waved away from the resulting corner before Tom White blazed a shot over the bar.
Kedwell was inches away from bringing the scores level as Lawrie Wilson’s cross just evaded the former Gillingham striker.
Debutant Molyneux drove the Heed forward and almost had an assist to his name, he slipped in Boden who curled a shot wide of Ashmore’s post at the second attempt.
The Fleet hoisted a number of long balls into the Heed box but Steve Watson’s side remained firm.
Olley produced a goal-saving header to deny the onrushing Kedwell a chance to head into an open goal, as the Heed defended with their backs against the wall to come away with three points.
Ebbsfleet XI: Ashmore, King, Bush(Graham 67), Magri, Rance, Whitely, Drury, Wilson, Shields(Cheek 81), Kedwell(c), McQueen (Coulson 67)
Subs not used: Powell, Miles
Gateshead XI: Pears; Tinkler ©, Kerr (Devitt 90+1), Mellish, O’Donnell, Forbes, White, Olley; Molyneux(Thomson 71), Rigg, Boden
Subs not used: Foden, Hunter, McManus
Goals: Bush OG (14),
Referee: David Rock
Attendance: 1392 (34 Gateshead)
MOTM: Fraser Kerr