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Bishop Sutton winning run ended after a dozen victories

By Somerset Guardian  |  Posted: January 10, 2013

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TOOLSTATION PREMIER DIVISION Bishop Sutton's long winning run finally came to an end on Saturday with a 2-1 defeat at Ilfracombe Town.

Sutton had won 12 successive matches in all competitions, having maintained a perfect record since a 3-2 loss at Melksham Town in September.

Missing five first-team regulars, Sutton matched their opponents before the break but fell behind in the 32nd minute when defender Nathan Loader sliced a clearance and the ball fell kindly for Steve Holland to put Ilfracombe ahead.

Sutton equalised on 63 minutes when clever approach play down the right culminated with a long crossfield ball by Jack Durrant to find Pete Sheppard, whose centre was headed home by Billy Downes.

Scott Huxtable impressed off the bench for the visitors, who nearly went ahead on 75 minutes when Downes' long-range shot was acrobatically tipped over by the home keeper.

However, Ilfracombe won it two minutes later when a free-kick on the left was rolled to Shaun Copp, whose drive flew into the top corner.

Although Bishop Sutton remain in third place, they will not be going up to the Evo-Stik League Southern even if they finish in the top two.

Their Lakeview ground does not meet the required criteria for a Step 4 club, with several improvements needed before promotion could be considered, so they have not applied for promotion this season.

However, Sutton do hold ambitions to progress to the Southern League and hope to carry out the improvements when they have enough money.

The league revealed last week that the only two clubs to apply for promotion from the Toolstation Premier Division this season are Brislington and Hallen, who lie first and fourth respectively.

Meanwhile, Radstock Town returned to action after a three-week break with a 9-2 humbling at the hands of Buckland Athletic.

The Miners were 3-0 down at the break and, although Isaac Reid pulled one back in the 52nd minute, hosts Buckland quickly hit a fourth before adding three more in the space of six minutes.

Reid got a second for Radstock but Athletic were not finished and scored two more to complete the rout.

On Saturday, Sutton host Larkhall Athletic and Radstock entertain Hallen.

Both teams are in action again on Tuesday, at home to Brislington and Melksham Town respectively.

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