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Higgins penalty double puts Stockbridge second
Stockbridge 2 Amesbury Town 0.
Two penalties by Dean Higgins in the second half were enough to send Stockbridge climbing into second place in the league behind early leaders New Milton Town.
There were chances at each end in the first half which the visitors edged and the Robins have to thank keeper Dan Chapman for making two fine saves with his feet to stop the visitors taking the lead, although the Robins still had their chances. Dave Barker blocked a shot on the line after only three minutes and a minute later Daryl Phillips brought a save from Joey McEntee in the visitor’s goal. Soon after, Gavin Burgess’s 35 yard effort screamed over the Amesbury crossbar then on ten minutes Stockbridge kept the ball out in a frantic goal mouth scramble.
Just after, the Robins’ keeper made the first of his fine saves to keep out Tyler Brockway then at the other end on 22 minutes a cross from the right was met by Stockbridge skipper Stuart Findlay but his shot flew just wide. On the half hour Chapman pulled off another fine save to deny Amesbury’s Richard Proctor and soon after Higgins saw his shot blocked by a defender on the line. The second half saw Stockbridge on top for long periods and just two minutes into the half a fine ball by Findlay from the right found Phillips whose shot went just wide. Phillips had another chance soon after when he latched onto a cross from the right but he mis-hit his shot.
It was Phillips who then became the provider and his cross was met by Findlay and McEntee brought off a brilliant save to deny him. The visitors were now under the cosh and Stockbridge were awarded a penalty for a handball which Higgins duly despatched and soon after Phillips was brought down in the box and from the ensuing second penalty Higgins blasted the ball into the corner of the net to make it 2-0 and give the home side the three points.
Reaction and more from Stockbridge here and in Friday's Advertiser.