Hastings United win 3-2 from 2-0 down in the final 17 minutes, with two goals in injury time against league leaders Bishop’s Stortford.
Steve Smith, Bishop’s Stortford’s boss, came under criticism after he watched his side lose a two goal lead and were unable to keep their place at the top of the Isthmian League Premier Division standings.
The Blues found themselves 2-0 by the 61st minute ahead and on track for a win that would have kept their top spot.
But Hastings got one back 12 minutes later, making it a tense finish for the staff and 563 fans inside the stadium.
With just a minute left of normal time, they were still leading, only for Stortford, slip up with Sam Adams and Ben Pope finding the net in injury time to put Bishop’s second in the table.
.@BSFCTheBlues boss Steve Smith was criticised by fans for a double substitution with Stortford leading 2-0. @hastingsufc scored three in last 17 mins, including 95th-winner, as Blues surrendered their position at top of @IsthmianLeague to @HornchurchFChttps://t.co/ruN0EzLW9e
— StortfordIndependent (@StortfordIndie) March 12, 2023
In-form Hornchurch came from behind to defeat struggling Brightlingsea Regent, 4-1, while Aveley (who won 2-1 against Folkestone) are now level on points with Bishop’s, both two points behind Hornchurch.
Bishop’s Stortford had got off to a strong start when Frankie Merrifield jumped on a defensive mistake to put on past Hastings goalkeeper Louis Rogers, claiming his 19th goal of this season, within six minutes.
The lead was extends midway into the second half as Darren Foxley was able to find some space inside the box and hit a low drive through Rogers’ legs.
Jack Giddens appeared to be fouled after he attempted to get a high-ball from a left-wing corner, but Hastings substitute Freddie Legg was on hand to get one back.
Hastings equalised as the game went into injury time, Sam Adams, who was brought on five minutes earlier, sent the ball into the bottom left corner, volleyed home from a deep cross from the right.
Hastings then scored the goal that kept them sixth in the table and in playoff contention.
Ben Pope placed the ball into the top right corner to secure the three points… cue scenes!
— Hastings United FC (@hastingsufc) March 11, 2023
This is how fans reacted online as Hastings win 3-2 from 2-0 down in the final 17 minutes, with two goals in injury time against the then-league leaders…
@hufcsoutheast: Haha that chap keep saying referee when we was celebrating the second goal. 🤣
@g_mann02: couldn’t have asked for a better hometown team ❤️
@adsmith2k: Top of the league, you’re having a laugh!!
@NaldrettJack: Best limbs I can remember in a long, long time. Unbelievable. Elphick losing his marbles. Of course it was Pope. It’s always Pope. I’ve watched this so many times 😂😂😂
@RobWood91: WHAT A DAY! Those scenes at the end! If ever there was a video to show the magic of non league football then this is it! GET IN THERE!!
@mattcarlin12: Carnage 🤣
@bowmanontheroad: Absolutely brilliant !! Gary showing a burst of speed there 😉. Gonna suggest the best moment of the season for all Hastings connections when Ben fires in that last gasp winner. LIMBS! Enjoy but get your feet back on the ground and go again. Lots of hard work to come !
@ChrisSkinner2: Great game, well deserved
The never say die attitude from the team
The tactical awareness from the bench
The determination from Freddie
The ball from Ryan
The composure from Sammy
The touch to set the ball from Ben
The limbs from the fans
Football doesn’t get any better 🏻
@jeffreyjohnbell: This is brilliant
@Chaz_CFC: Absolute PANDEMONIUM in the end there
@nomis1066: Superb comeback. 2-0 down after 60, Freddy Legge starts the comeback in the 73rd minute and right at the end Sam Adams equalises with Ben Pope’s pinpoint curler winning it. Carbon copy of his effort against Enfield Town on Tuesday – great save to keep that out – but this one….
@BobJQuinn: In all the excitement of Ben’s winner, sort of bypassed Sam’s goal, watching this again it’s a great strike too 👍
@Ginger1984yol: Unbelievable video… Lou was lively arriving on the scene 😂😂😂
@JoeKnightHUFC97: What a magical game. So pleased I was there to film the goals just look at the celebrations 😍🎥⚽️💙
@hayleyclout: What a team 💙 Never stop believing until the final whistle 💚 Thank you to all the fans and what a Club we have ❤️
‘How many times have you watched the winner go in?’ pic.twitter.com/WdgRCQmB9M
— Charlie (@Chaz_CFC) March 11, 2023