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Stoppage-time goal means successive defeats for Guiseley
Buy this photo » James Walshaw, who scored Guiseley's goal from a free-kick, holds up play against Bishop's Stortford
Guiseley 1, Bishop's Stortford 2
A stoppage-time winner for visitors Bishop’s Stortford made it back-to-back defeats for Guiseley yesterday, who had been early Blue Square Bet North leaders.
The home side looked tentative throughout after losing their 100 per cent start the previous Saturday and were undone even though the visitors had ten men for the majority of the second half following a highly-controversial incident just six minutes after the break.
One of the Bishop’s men failed to get up following a fair challenge near the halfway line in the 51st minute and his team-mates played on.
Defender Phil Anderson dithered in possession, appearing to be caught in two minds regarding continuing or knocking the ball out of play.
Guiseley forward Gavin Rothery tackled him, won the ball and set off towards the area. At that point, Anderson grabbed him by the shoulders and hurled him to the ground. The whistle blew and mass confusion broke out.
The referee consulted with his assistant and brandished a red card at Anderson. The outraged centre back refused to walk as his team-mates pleaded his case and the referee appeared to show the centre back a second red card for his actions before he departed with head bowed.
The on-field retribution was instantaneous as James Walshaw fired the resulting free-kick into the top corner.
That made the match all square at 1-1 because the visitors had taken a first-half lead when Lewis Spence lashed the ball in on the half-hour after being found unmarked on the edge of the six-yard box by Jesse Waller-Lassen’s low, driven centre.
Once the Lions were back in the game, they dominated, which left Bishop’s lone striker Reneil Sappleton even more isolated. However, the big forward was still a handful for the home side’s defence.
Lions’ boss Steve Kittrick made a desperate last throw of the dice when he made a double substitution four minutes from time to freshen up his attack force.
But there was to be a late twist as the visitors forced a set-piece three minutes into stoppage time and the ball fell to Matt Johnson.
The power in the shot took it past Lions keeper Steve Drench even though he got two hands to it.
* FC Halifax Town won a second consecutive Blue Square North fixture for the first time this season in emphatic style.
Lee Gregory registered a first-half hat-trick in a four-goal haul past Gloucester City in the first 45 minutes.
Just 25 seconds was all it took for Town to take the lead as former Bantam Jon Worthington placed a shot into the bottom corner from inside the box before Gregory put his mark on the match.
He doubled Town’s lead with a delightful lob before being on hand to tap in from a flick-on at a corner.
His best was between the strikes though, as he plucked the ball from the sky and, using strength to hold off his marker, hit a volley while pirouetting to score from an unfathomable angle.
He completed his and Town’s scoring in the second half, when rounding the goalkeeper and placing the ball into an empty net.