Three Bridges exit FA Trophy at struggling Staines Town
Three Bridges were knocked out of the FA Trophy on Saturday by a Staines Town side who had won just once this season.
The Swans progressed to the third qualifying round for the first time in eight years after a 3-1 home win over Bridges.
Bridges dominated the opening 20 minutes. Staines keeper Joe Ringer tipped Mason Doughty’s drilled effort wide before Callum Chesworth’s shot was comfortably saved.
But then Bridges allowed themselves to be overrun at times by a Staines side intent on impressing interim manager Jack Porter.
Eight minutes into the second half, Michael Wilson lost possession and a swift through ball gave David Pitt the opportunity to slide the ball past Bridges keeper Dan Smith for the opening goal of the game.
Lee Hall, who never stopped running and hassling, and Doughty both created half chances for the visitors, but after 67 minutes substitute Omar Watt Ndongo, only on a minute earlier, created the opening for Noah Amissah to finish clinically.
It could have been worse for Bridges five minutes later as Smith saved from Amissah and Ndongo made a hash of the rebound.
Tad Bromage headed wide from Curtis Gayler’s corner as Bridges tried to breathe life into their challenge.
But, after 77 minutes, a foul by the otherwise impressive Rhys Paul on Bridges substitute Ben Aubrey led to a mass brawl with both being shown red cards.
A foul on second half replacement Dan Perry, after 84 minutes, gave Bridges a lifeline. Brannon O’Neill coolly despatched the penalty, but two minutes a swift Staines counter attack was finished well by Jack Torbett.
A couple more needless bookings for Staines and a saved Gayler free kick brought the game to a conclusion.
While the home side celebrated a rare victory, Bridges were left to rue what might have been.
This Saturday sees Three Bridges on the road once more as they travel to Hythe Town for an Isthmian South East game.
The Cannons sit 10th on nine points, two points and two places behind Bridges.