Burgess Hill 0, Staines Town 2: Hillians hit by quick-fire double

BHTFC v Northampton. Ian Chapman. Pic Steve Robards, SR1516214 SUS-150713-124149001
BHTFC v Northampton. Ian Chapman. Pic Steve Robards, SR1516214 SUS-150713-124149001
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Hillians concede two goals in three minutes to lose to Staines Town at the Green Elephants Stadium.

Two second-half goals from Luke Wanabio and Jack Hutchinson in quick succession secured the victory for the visiting team.

Burgess Hill earnt themselves a point two weeks ago at Staines in a hard fought 2-2 draw but have only collected two points in their last five games.

In the opening five minutes, Hillians gifted Staines winger Wanadio an excellent chance after losing possession at the back. Rounding the keeper, Wanadio’s strike was weak and allowed Sam Fisk to clear the ball off the goal-line.

After 22 minutes, a scuffed clearance from the Staines goalkeeper Jack Turner provided an opening for Pat Harding, who was unable to capitalise on the opportunity choosing to cross the ball towards Chris Smith, which was intercepted.

Staines earnt themselves two free-kicks on the edge of the 18-yard box as Will Miles grappled onto Staines striker Pat Cox twice in the opening 25 minutes. Wanadio’s second free-kick came closest rattling the crossbar, with the help of a deflection off the wall.

Staines’ Erivaldo Felix whipped in a dangerous cross for Cox after an excellent individual run from right-back, but the striker was not able to get enough on it to head it passed keeper Josh James.

A late challenge on Luc Doherty caused temperatures to rise with just five minutes left of the first half. Keehan came closest to scoring, his header saved off the line by the defender guarding the inside post.

Lee Harding had a superb chance to split the two sides, but a last ditch tackle by centre-back Mitchell Gough prevented him from getting his shot away.

Wanabio posing as the threat again made a darting run across the edge of the 18-yard box skipping passed two Burgess Hill players only to fire a weak shot straight into the arms of the Hillians keeper James.

In search of breaking the deadlock, Dan Perry was subbed on for Chris Smith after 63 minutes. The youngster looked lively and created an early chance. Sam Fisk’s long throw found Perry in space behind the defence, who provided a low cross for Pat Harding who controlled the ball before his shot was deflected wide for a corner.

The repercussions of the squandered chances were immediate as Staines’ caught Burgess Hill on the counter, thumping the ball up to Wanadio, he cut inside defender Toby Pointing before rifling the ball across James into the bottom left corner.

With the Hillians rattled, Staines kept pressing and forced Burgess Hill to make some poor defensive clearances which were capitalised on by Staines midfielder Hutchinson, whose deflected effort from the edge of the area gave James no chance as the ball flew into the top right corner after 69 minutes.

Staines’ Captain and Goalkeeper Turner made a couple of excellent reaction saves to keep a clean sheet for the visitors, preventing Pat Harding’s close-range header and Joe Keehan’s low powerful strike late on.

A plethora of missed chances cost Burgess Hill the three points and their chance of ending their run of five games without a win. Hillians will hope to break that duck next time out at home to the Metropolitan Police on Saturday 17th October.

Hillians: Josh James, Luc Doherty, Sam Fisk, Will Miles, Toby Pointing, Ollie Rowland (Phil Johnson 80), Darren Budd (Scott Kirkwood 69), Joe Keehan, Pat Harding, Lee Harding, Chris Smith (Dan Perry 63).

Not used: Cam Wiltshire and Callum Saunders.

Attendance: 337.

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