First team match report

Report by Colin Stokes plus some action pics

Stockbridge 1 Bush Hill 3

This match would have been worth paying on pay to view although it brought an end of a run of 9 games without defeat for the hosts this afternoon after this spirited display on a Stockbridge  pitch which is kept in pristine condition by groundsmen Pete Savage and Stuart Mawson. The setting was completed  with a lovely backdrop of Autumn tint colourings on the surrounding trees and cows in the field just the other side of the fence showing plenty of vocal support even though they seemed more interested in grazing grass  than watching the football. Stockbridge so nearly could have got the result they had  worked so hard for after Bush Hill switched off after going 2-0 up in the second half when the Robins leading goal scorer and clinical finisher Lacelles Richardson  struck to notch his 8th goal of the season to put the home side back in the game late on but Bush Hill found the target once more in the closing moments to put the game to bed. This win for Bush Hill moves them into the top spot of the Hampshire premier league with the same amount of points as Infinity but with a better goal difference to their advantage.  

Stockbridge team line up.

T  Adams, Belbin, N Abrahams, Maddock, Coleman, Standon, P Abrahams, Hannam, Richardson, Savage, Graham, Subs. Pitt, Rogers, Lace, Bailey, O Adams.

A lively first half from start to finish. Ross Belbin was looking sharp in defence dealing with a number of early Bush Hill attacks. A good effort from Lacelles Richardson was deflected over the bar by Bush Hills keeper for a corner on 15 minutes. Soon after Bush Hills centre forward threaded his way through the Stockbridge defenders but struck it too high. A shot from Jack Hannam but he dragged it  wide on 25 minutes. Reece Standon did well to clear another Bush Hill effort just off the line with an overhead scissor kick as half an hour loomed. In fact Reece was tested on several occasions around this stage of the match and did well every time. A cracking save from Stockbridge keeper Thomas Adams keeping out another Bush Hill effort 10 minutes before the interval. Shortly after another Bush Hill shot sailed over the bar. Hannam struck a powerful free kick for Stockbridge from around the half way line but the visiting keeper had it deal’t with. Bush Hill took the lead just before half time with a goal scored by Long from close range which was much to the disapointment of the Stockbridge players technical crew and supporters who didnt think the goal should have counted as a handball infringement had occured, however the ref hadn’t seen it from his angle of view and the goal was given and Bush Hill were 1-0 up. 

Half time 

Stockbridge 0 Bush Hill 1

Second half.

A chance for Paul Abrahams went a tad wide a few minutes into the half. Another Bush Hill attempt had Stockbridge keeper Adams racing from the far post to the near post but that also went wide. A Richardson header was saved by the keeper just after the hour mark. Adams was on form again with another great save soon after. Hannam shot wide with 15 minutes left to play. 2 more Bush Hill attacks were deflected away for corners around 80 minutes. Bush Hill doubled their lead when Drake struck from the right to put his side 2-0 up on 85 minutes. Bush Hill thought they had done enough to secure victory and Paul Abrahams found himself with some space and squared  a nice ball  to tee up  Richardson who drilled it home from 10 yards to put the Robins back in with a chance. and set up a frantic final few minutes pushing for a leveller, but then Strong let rip a well taken strike from the left to send the visitors home 3-1 winners. 

Stockbridge manager Rob Blandford said after the match that his players had shown so much character and deserved a draw. Assistant manager Fran Mathers added that the Stockbridge work rate was exceptional and that the side should to take the positives.

Stockbridge are home to Liphook this coming Wednesday evening with a 7.45pm kick off. Next Saturday Stockbridge travel to Locks Heath with a 3pm kick off. 


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