It was a difficult afternoon on Saturday for Ian Chapman’s side on Saturday, as they were beaten 1-0 at home to Tonbridge Angels FC, writes Charlie Kelly.
Led by debuton, and captain Gary Elphick, the Hillians started on the back foot, taking a while to settle into the game.
It was not long before Elphick was called into action, with Angels striker Alex Akrofi causing some problems for the Hillians back four.
Once more the Hillians defended valiantly, with goalkeeper James Shaw being called into some fine saves.
The Tonbridge onslaught persisted, with the Hillians yet to settle into the game come the half hour mark. On 38 minutes, a brilliant move from the Hillians saw left back Joey Taylor released down the left, only for his fantastic cross to evade everyone.
Unfortunately, midfielder Jack Brivio took a knock late on in the first half, adding another negative to a disappointing day. Early into the second half, the centre back pairing of Elphick and Fisk showed some resolute defending, denying Akrofi and Elder respectively.
The Hillians held out for 70 minutes, before a nice move from Tonbridge led to the danger man Akrofi racing through, who calmly slotted it past Shaw to make it 1-0.
Tonbridge brought on former Hillians striker Dan Thompson, who looked to add a second for the Angels, but goalkeeper James Shaw was adamant on keeping the goal margin down to one. As the game drew to a close, and the Hillians searching for an equaliser, Tonbridge remained strong at the back, and managed to hold out for the 1-0 win.
Some fine defensive performances from Elphick, Richmond and Shaw, perhaps shined a light on an otherwise miserable day for the Hillians. Ian Chapman’s side go again midweek against Horsham, in the Velocity cup, before the big one this Saturday.