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Bishop's Stortford pay the penalty for early miss against Hungerford Town

By Herts & Essex Observer  |  Posted: February 14, 2017

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07 Shomari Barnwell

GOLDEN CHANCE: Shomari Barnwell saw his penalty hit the post after just four minutes (Photo by Nathan Cracknell)

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Bishop's Stortford manager Mark Hawkes believes the 2-0 loss to Hungerford Town on Saturday was his side's best performance since he has been at the club.

The Blues had a chance to take the lead in the fourth minute with a penalty but Shomari Barnwell hit the woodwork.

Goals from Warren Bentley and Luke Williams were enough to condemn Stortford to their 20th loss of the season.Stortford stay 21st in the Vanarama National League South, and are still five points from safety. Despite the loss, Hawkes was upbeat about his side's display.

"The whole 90 minute performance is the best since we've been here, it had the complete package," Hawkes explained.

"We did have an opportunity to get in front from the penalty spot after four minutes and it could have been a lot different if we had scored that.

"Every player did what we asked them to do, but we didn't get the result. We have to move on."

The game had started brightly for the away side, and they earned a deserved penalty when Luke Callander was dragged down as he was about to nod the ball into the back of the net.

It was rough justice for the side, as Barnwell's powerful effort had the keeper beaten but not the post.

The Crusaders took the lead in the 31st minute when Bentley was given far too much space in the area and fired into the far corner.

Stortford could not catch a break, and had a goal disallowed for offside in the second half, when Callander tapped home after 48 minutes.

With 20 minutes to go, Hungerford wrapped up the points with a second, Williams scoring with an effort 20 yards out.

The Stortford gaffer insisted the offside decision was correct and his side are missing that little bit of luck. He added: "No it was offside, no complaints.

"We got in goal-scoring opportunities three or four times in the game and we didn't take our chances.

"We just got a bit out of shape at the back and they had a man over at the far post for the first goal. The second one was a decent strike from 30 yards.

"There are always ways to stop goals; close them down quicker, nobody closed him down.

""Shomari might take the same shot and it flies over the bar. It was a decent strike and couldn't do anything about it.

"When you're at the bottom, you have to work harder than everyone else. You don't get the run of the ball, or think that you don't, and ricochets fall to the opposition.

"We know that and we've just got to carry on. If we can pick up, I'm sure we can pick up points and beat teams around us, and enable us to stay up."

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