United Suffer Injury Time Heartbreak
By Simon Ball-McQueen
Basford United 1 Stocksbridge Park Steels 2
Basford United were left to rue missed chances and long spells of attacking dominance, as they succumbed to unbeaten Stocksbridge Park Steels in injury time, at Greenwich Avenue on Saturday afternoon.
Manager Martin Carruthers made four changes from the starting eleven that lost narrowly to Lincoln United on Tuesday night bringing in Rob McCormick, Ben Hutchinson, Blair Anderson and the Under-21s’ midweek hat-trick hero Cory Grantham, who started ahead of Reuben Wiggins-Thomas.
United took total control of the first half and had the ball in the net as early as the third minute but Jermaine Hollis was deemed to be in an offside position. Hutchinson then tested the Stocksbridge keeper’s resolve with a clever lob 60 seconds later.
McCormick’s header was beaten away by the visitors’ keeper on 19 minutes before the debutant opened the scoring with eight minutes left in the half.
Basford limited their visitors to just two chances in the opening 45 minutes, with Saul Deeney’s flying save from Adam Hinchcliffe’s shot being the closest Stocksbridge came to scoring before the break.
Basford again started well in the second half and had chances to extend their lead but as the game wore on, Stocksbridge began to find their feet and they equalised through sub Richard Patterson on 69 minutes.
Five minutes later United were awarded the perfect opportunity to go back in front but substitute Stuart Hendrie’s penalty was saved by substitute keeper David Reay.
Both sides then continued to push for a winner but it was the visitors who then snatched all three points in the first minute of stoppage time, as Hinchcliffe’s 30 yard thunderbolt crashed off the underside of the crossbar and into the Basford net.
United will now look to quickly re-group and take away the many positives from the performance, when they travel to face Loughborough Dynamo on Tuesday evening (7.45pm kick-off).