How will Boro fare?
MARCUS CRAWLEY reports STEVENAGE Boro s home game against Scarborough this Saturday has taken on massive proportions. Wins for Grays and York on Tuesday night saw Graham Westley s side drop out of the play-off places. Only three points will suffice this w
MARCUS CRAWLEY reports
STEVENAGE Boro's home game against Scarborough this Saturday has taken on massive proportions.
Wins for Grays and York on Tuesday night saw Graham Westley's side drop out of the play-off places.
Only three points will suffice this weekend as Boro then meet play-off hopefuls Halifax (away) and York (home) as well as resurgent Crawley (home) in between before travelling to relegation threatened Forest Green on the last Saturday of the regular Conference league season.
Boro boss Westley said: "There are just five league games and 15 points to win. We have to concentrate on our form and let everything else take care of itself."
And Boro will also have to wait at least another 12 months for a chance to get their hands on the Herts Senior Cup.
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The club has not won the trophy in its 30-year existence and no team from Stevenage has ever lifted the cup.
The 115th playing of the final on Tuesday night saw a strong Boro side beaten 1-0 by Conference South side Bishop's Stortford at the County Ground, Letchworth.
All of Westley's starting XI have tasted first team action this season including the likes of Mickey Warner, Justin Gregory, Rob Quinn, Adam Miller, Ollie Berquez, Simon Weatherstone and Jefferson Louis.
Also included were reserve keeper Shane Gore, fringe players Ieuan Lewis and Eric Obinna and new boy Rob Duffy.
Although Boro were on top in the early stages, they struggled to create too much, a pattern which continued throughout the 90 minutes.
Weatherstone volleyed wide from a promising opportunity but it was Gore who was forced into action to keep out Dave Rainford's fierce shot.
Gore seemed to be culpable as Roy Essandoh, the former FA Cup hero for Wycombe, scrambled in the opening goal on 38 minutes.
Stortford keeper Andrew Young did well to keep out Louis' flick from a Miller free-kick, while only Duffy would only know his true intentions as he fired high, wide and not very handsome minutes later.
The turgid nature of the contest on a freezing night continued after the break.
Boro enjoyed a brief flurry midway through the half as Obinna twice wasted decent chances and Weatherstone's shot was well held by Young.
Eight minutes were added following a lengthy injury but Boro, a Louis shot which fizzed just past the post apart, rarely threatened to force extra-time.
Boro: Gore, Warner, Gregory, Quinn (Sealey 78), Obinna, Miller (Gale 90), Duffy (Iwediuno 58), Berquez, Louis, Weatherstone, Lewis.