Hastings United’s footballers were beaten by Three Bridges for the second time in two-and-a-half weeks tonight (Tuesday).
Bridges became only the second team after runaway leaders Folkestone Invicta to complete the double over United in Ryman Football League Division One South this season with a 3-2 victory.
United left themselves a mountain to climb by falling three goals behind in the first 37 minutes, and although they struck either side of half time to get back into it, the deficit proved just too much to claw back.
Harry Doherty made his debut in United’s goal and fellow Brighton & Hove Albion loanee Robin Deen also made the starting line-up in midfield. Sam Cole returned after being an unused substitute at the weekend, but Simon Johnson missed out through injury.
Bridges took command with three goals in the space of 12 minutes. Jamie Brotherton latched on to a long ball and slotted home the opener before Sammy MacVicar headed in a Tony Garrod cross six minutes later.
Brotherton made it 3-0 by mopping up the rebound after Doherty had thwarted Garrod. United got one back in the 42nd minute when Chris Cumming-Bart was fouled by John Lansdale inside the box and Cole tucked away the subsequent penalty.
Sean Ray struck the top of the Bridges crossbar with a looping header before the break, while after the turnaround, Hakeem Adelakun skimmed United’s crossbar following a long ball by Lansdale.
Sam Adams shot just wide for United before they pulled another goal back on the hour. Cumming-Bart picked up a loose ball just outside the area and his shot deflected into the corner.
Tyrell Richardson-Brown was denied by a super save from Kieron Thorp and Ollie Rowe’s header from a Cumming-Bart cross was narrowly off target as a United equaliser proved elusive.
United: Doherty, Rowe, Cole, Deen, Ray, Walder, Richardson-Brown (Wilson), Cumming-Bart, Attwood, Adams, Cruttwell (Temba). Subs not used: Foster, Smith, Rose. Attendance: 108.
Ryman Division One South top half (played-points): 1 Folkestone Invicta 36-86, 2 Dorking Wanderers 36-70, 3 Worthing 35-68, 4 Herne Bay 36-63, 5 Ramsgate 36-61, 6 Faversham Town 35-61, 7 Corinthian-Casuals 35-60, 8 HASTINGS UNITED 32-59, 9 Hythe Town 33-59, 10 Guernsey 36-58, 11 Molesey 34-58, 12 Carshalton Athletic 36-55.
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