Potters Bar Town 4 Blues 2 – full report

Blues’ unbeaten run came to an end as they let a 2-0 lead slip to crash to a 4-2 loss at Potter Bar, on Tuesday.

Nick Brown’s first goal for the club put Blues 1-0 up after 16 minutes before Johnville Renee doubled the lead six minutes later.

But the game was changed by Steve Brown’s goal on the stroke of half-time and Keegan Cole levelled from the spot six minutes into the second half and a brace from Bradley Sach gave the home side the victory. Version:1.0 StartHTML:000000207 EndHTML:000178278 StartFragment:000166070 EndFragment:000178156 StartSelection:000166347 EndSelection:000178156 SourceURL: Mail (539)

But for several fine stops late on by Calum Kitscha Stortford could have been on the end of a heavier loss.

It was their first defeat in over a month and the first of Steve Smith and Jamie Cureton’s interim managership. The Pakex Stadium held unhappy memories last term and it was the same this time around.

Jake Cass was training with Braintree Town and was not available for selection but Jordan Wescott had completed his one match suspension and was on the bench and came on as a second half substitute. Meanwhile Ryan Charles, who had been unavailable the previous weekend returned to the starting eleven.

The Blues pinned the Scholars back on the defensive from the off and Jamie Cureton, receiving a pass from Jack Thomas in the fourth minute was close with a shot on the turn from a narrow angle and then skipper Sam Robbins was just wide with a far post header following an Alfie Mason corner. Town’s Steve Brown placed a header wide of the target at the other end but Stortford went close again in the 14th minute as good work by Nick Brown provided the opportunity for Cureton to cross low from the left through the six yard box with no one getting a touch.

Stortford deservedly took the lead in the 17th minute. An Alfie Mason free-kick from the right was headed away by defender Sean Grace but only as far as Nick Brown, who from 25 yards range struck the ball perfectly on the volley and the ball flew high into the top corner.

The lead was doubled six minutes later when Cureton squared the ball from the left to just outside the box and Charles, without stopping his run, blasted the ball past Town keeper Berkley Laurencin.

There was then a period of mostly midfield action but the Blues still had the edge closing down their opponents when they were in possession. However, with a minute of normal time left the hosts pulled a goal back. They won a corner on the left and Keegan Cole’s flag-kick was met by Steve Brown, climbing high above everyone else, to head home at the far upright.

Matters got worse five minutes after the restart as Cole’s free-kick from the left saw Thomas ruled to have tugged at Brown’s shirt in the penalty area and Cole netted from the spot.

Then in the 57th minute the hosts took the lead after Stortford were caught in possession near the half-way line and Sach broke clear to score.

Charles had a shot close to goal in the 65th minute but the Scholars were now dominating the proceedings with the Blues defence now looking vulnerable virtually every time the hosts attacked. Kitscha had to come out to block from Sach in the 70th minute when again the striker broke through.

Three minutes later a long throw into the box by Chris Gregan eventually dropped to Jamie Cureton on the edge of the area, but his strong, low effort was held by Laurencin. Town continued to threaten in the last ten minutes with Kitscha busy dealing raids from Billy Adcock and Sach as well as pushing aside a shot from substitute George Nicholas.

It was Scahwho completed the scoring in the 85th minute following a Cole corner on the left that led to a goalmouth scramble before Sach tucked the ball into the back of the net.

Just before the end Kitscha twice denied Sach a hat-trick as well as saving from Dernell Wynter.

Unfortunately, one unsavoury feature of the game was the hosts’intimidating tactics by action or words to try to influence the referee’s decisions.

STORTFORD: Calum Kitscha; Dan Humphreys (Jordan Wescott 68); Chris Gregan; Jack Thomas; Sam Robbins; Isaac Nkosi; Ryan Charles; Johnville Renee (Olly Miles 86); Jamie Cureton; Nick Brown (Hector Kyprianou 74); Alfie Mason.

Unused substitute: Marcus Crowther.

POTTERS BAR TOWN: Berkley Laurencin; Chris Doyle; Andy Lomas; Lee O’Leary; Steve Brown; Sean Grace; Dernell Wynter; Billy Adcock; Keegan Cole (Ryan Forde 86); Bradley Sach; Andre da Costa (George Nicholas 79).

Unused substitutes: Eoin Casey, Sandro Costa Dias Fernandes and Daryl Vas.

Referee: Mr Paul Johnson

Attendance: 256