King’s Lynn Town FC pay the penalty against Biggleswade

Gary Setchell makes his point to the assistant ref.
Gary Setchell makes his point to the assistant ref.
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Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division

King’s Lynn Town FC 1 Biggleswade 2

King’s Lynn Town suffered back-to-back Southern League defeats for the first time since August as Biggleswade became the first side to do the double over them this season.

Michael Clunan cancelled out Inih Effiong’s first-half penalty early in the second period before Effiong notched a second spot-kick deep into stoppage time.

It was cruel on Lynn, who dominated possession for long periods, and all but ended their hopes of reaching the play-offs for another season.

Lynn’s starting line-up showed three changes from Saturday as manager Gary Setchell shuffled his pack.

Michael Clunan, Kurtis Revan and Ryan Hawkins all returned to the side with Dan Quigley and Toby Hilliard dropping to the bench.

Defensive midfielder Lee Smith was a late withdrawal for Lynn a few minutes before kick-off, so player-assistant boss Lee Stevenson, who was originally named as a substitute, kept his place in the side.

The first opportunity of the game fell to the hosts after seven minutes when a looping cross from Sam Warburton on the left was headed over the woodwork by Leon Mettam.

Lynn remained on top and some delightful link-up play between Shaun McWilliams and Michael Clunan 15 minutes in led to the former being fouled on the edge of the box.

Stevenson drilled the resulting free-kick into the Biggleswade wall before firing the rebound hard and wide of the target.

The Waders took the lead against the run of play in the 25th minute after a clumsy challenge from Tom Ward on Rhys Hoenes led to a penalty and Effiong stepped up to put the visitors in front.

Thirteen minutes before the break, the lively Revan forced Ian Brown into a low save down to his left as Lynn looked for a quick response.

Lynn maintained the pressure and Shaun McWilliams bamboozled a pair of Biggleswade defenders but his final shot whistled past the wrong side of the post.

The Linnets thought they’d won a penalty of their own three minutes into the second period when referee Tom Hancock pointed to the spot after Mettam’s volley struck the hand of Russell Short.

But after a long consultation with his assistant, the referee changed his mind with the striker deemed to be in an offside position when he received the ball.

The home faithful didn’t have to wait too much longer for an equaliser though when, in the 53rd minute, Clunan finished brilliantly from just outside the box.

Lynn missed a golden opportunity to go ahead 15 minutes from time after Mettam ballooned an exquisite cross from substitute Toby Hilliard over the woodwork.

Deep into stoppage time, a through ball from Inih Effiong found Rhys Hoenes despite a suspicion of offside.

Hoenes attempted to round Street and was brought down by the goalkeeper and up stepped Effiong to roll the ball in after Street had committed himself.

King’s Lynn Town: Alex Street, Kurtis Revan, Ryan Fryatt, Sam Gaughan, Tom Ward, Lee Stevenson, Michael Clunan, Shaun McWilliams, Ryan Hawkins, Leon Mettam, Sam Warburton (Toby Hilliard 60). Subs: Dan Quigley, Jacek Zielonka, Jordan Yong.

Booked: Gaughran, Hawkins.

Goal: Clunan 53.

Biggleswade Town: Ian Brown, Jordan Patrick, Lucas Perry, Connor Hall, Russell Short (Evan Key 77), Gavin Hoyte, Craig Daniel, Robbie Parker, Inih Effiong, Tony Burnett (Connor Vincent 46), Ryan Hoenes. Subs: Sam Patin, Sam Gibson.

Booked: Jordan Patrick, Lucas Perry.

Goals: Effiong 25, 90+1.

Attendance: 345.

Referee: Mr Tom Hancock (Ely).