A below par Basingstoke were beaten 3-1 at home to Northwood as familiar problems with easy concessions of goals surfaced once more.

After taking the lead the visitors were happy to sit deep and prevent ‘Stoke finding the space to score until a well taken consolation strike from Brad Wilson in stoppage time.

Northwood’s gameplan was clear from the off and the took advantage of Basingstoke’s tendency to concede soft goals on 17 minutes as Josh Helmore somehow came through the challenges of Nathan Smart and goalkeeper Paul Strudley before squeezing the ball home from a tight angle.

Town were allowed plenty of possession in the first half but found themselves faced with a tight, compact wall of away players each time they attacked and struggled to create clear cut chances.

Brad Wilson looked to have equalized after half an hour but despite his opportunistic header squeezing past a defender on the line, the offside flag cut the celebrations short.

Indeed, it was Strudley called into action again before the break, saving with his foot from Kyal Williams while Carl Stewart volleyed over when presented with a good chance from fifteen yards out.

It got worse early in the second half as Strudley parried a long range shot out into the middle of the box and Teddy Stacey survived Town’s offside appeals as he bundled the rebound in with just 2 minutes of the second period gone.

Basingstoke pushed to get back into the game, Robb Sheridan volleying off target from close range from a far post free kick while Daniel Purdue was equal to a fierce Wilson strike and Stefan Brown’s rebound was turned wide.

Northwood finished the game off with a counterattack on 87 minutes though, taking advantage of an exposed home defence as substitute Micah Jackson squared for Sydney Ibie to calmly finish.

There was time for ‘Stoke to at least get on the scoresheet themselves, a wonderful long-range pass from substitute Ben Cook tempting Wilson to hammer a volley home but it was too late to affect the result as Basingstoke slipped out of the playoff places.