Own goal 67
A wet and windy Maurice Rebak Stadium saw Wingate & Finchley slip to a heavy 5-1 defeat to Bishop's Stortford and, consequently fall short of their hopes of a quarter-final place in the Velocity Trophy.
It was a much changed side to the one that advanced through to the FA Trophy Second Round at the weekend and within three minutes, went behind.
Jamie Cureton broke down the left and squared for Olly Miles to tap into an empty net. 11 minutes on, David Manu advanced towards goal down the right and hit low, but Calum Kitscha made the save with his legs. Ryan Charles' dangerous low cross resulted in Cureton heading wide on 19 minutes and six minutes later, Jack Thomas nearly doubled the away Blues' lead, but his cross-cum-shot found the roof of the net.
27 minutes resulted in Johnville Renee picking out Charles inside the area, who could only drag his first-time attempt wide. The north Londoners came close to drawing level after half an hour. Calvin Ekpiteta's shimmy allowed Charlie Cole to fizz a cross across the face of goal from the inside left, which Manu came within inches of sliding home.
Ten minutes to go until the break, it was double-trouble for Glen Little's side. Cureton played Charles through down the inside left who managed to squeeze the ball into the net, despite Shane Gore getting a touch. In the 57th minute, the hosts pulled one back. Marcus Crowther's mistimed back-pass ensured Kitscha had to handle on the line resulting in an indirect free-kick. Former Bishop's Stortford striker, Ekpiteta received the lay-off from Carl Stewart to slam home from just outside the six-yard box.
The Hertfordshire outfit restored their two-goal lead five minutes on. Charles' deep cross connected with Cureton who headed in. An unfortunate moment came in the 67th minute. Charles burst down the right hand side and broke into the box, prior to laying a cross towards a crowded penalty box which made its way in off Ola Williams for an own-goal. It was 5-1 on 75 minutes. Cureton's left-sided free-kick picked out Hector Kyprianou to head inside the near-post.
And with three minutes left, Cureton lobbed Gore from distance yet found the upright. It was a result which left the Finchley supporters scratching their heads as to how the recent moment came crashing down.
Report by Khalid Karimullah