Whitchurch Utd 1 Basingstoke Town 2.
Hampshire Senior Cup.
When Shane Lock’s injury time effort rolled agonisingly wide of the post Whitchurch United’s dream of a Hants Senior Cup final place at Fratton Park disappeared at a rain sodden Longmeadow on Tuesday night.
In truth the Jam Boys never really got going against their Coference South neighbours Basingstoke Town, who, despite making nine changes to the line up from the Saturday before, were still strong and full of experience.
Despite the result boss Jim Macey was pleased with how the night went: “I thought we competed well and we were always in the game. We had to hold on a bit because they have got some good players but we could have nicked another goal at the end and sent it to extra-time.
"I'm pleased that we have got this far in the competition and we gave them a good game.
“Our priority this season is staying up. We should be able to do that and it would be nice to get to the finals of the Wessex League Cup and North Hants Senior Cup as well.”
The large crowd had barely took their placed before home keeper Alex Thompson had to be brave to dive at the feet of Simon Dunn with 15 seconds on the clock and moments later Robbie Matthews’ header was somehow clawed out by the flying Thompson.
Town were on top with United struggling to get any passing game together on a poor pitch and in the wind and rain and it was no surprise when Jordace Holder-Spooner scrambled home the opener after being gifted the ball.
Pa Touray won a tackle on half way and tested keeper Billy Granger with a chip then former Town striker Joe Harris went on a run before scuffing his shot from a good position.
Touray was unlucky to be cautioned soon after but redeemed himself when feeding Nic Turpin who broke free to lob Granger from 20 yards and equalise against the run of play with ten minutes left of the half.
Holder-Spooner then brought another save from Thompson as Whitchurch went in at the break level.
Town dominated at the restart but it took a hotly disputed goal from Kezie Ibe to give them the lead as United appealed for handball in the build to what was another scrappy goal.
Macey threw on Lock and Tom Lockyer and with 15 minutes left his side fashioned their best chance as Isaac Sedu and Lock combined before Turpin just failed to connect to the near inch perfect cross.
Lock was again wide with a strike and after Town substitute Louis Soares had twice gone close the youngster’s late effort rolled wide taking with it the semi-final place.
Whitchurch continue their busy schedule on Saturday when they entertain Bemerton Heath Harlequins in the Wessex Premier then on Tuesday they visit Stockbridge for the North Hants Senior Cup semi-final.