Stone searches for ruthless streak

Matt Cox scored for Havant. Picture: Keith Woodland

Havant give leaders Exeter a big scare

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Luke Stone has challenged Havant Ladies to become more ruthless after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Southgate.

Zoe Stride cancelled out the Londoners’ opener at Barncroft Way on Saturday.

But despite a dominant finish to the match, the hosts were unable to snatch victory in the South Clubs’ Women’s League division one encounter.

‘We have an enormous amount of potential,’ said Stone.

‘Our problem is we don’t consistently fulfil it.

‘We have flashes of brilliance but then fail to do the basics for the next 10 minutes.

‘Although I am happy with a point from the game, we all left the pitch knowing we could have had all three.’

A scrappy opening saw Havant struggle to get a foothold in the game.

The visitors looked the better side as they used the ball intelligently. Only a full-length save from keeper Chantelle Strudwick stopped the hosts falling behind.

Strudwick was powerless to stop Southgate edging ahead with a close-range finish on 14 minutes, though.

But Stride ensured Havant were not behind for long.

Little more than 60 seconds after they had conceded, Sophie Brigg raced down the right flank.

The Portsmouth Grammar School talent crossed for Stride, who took a touch before driving home a leveller.

Buoyed by the goal, Havant began to improve.

Stride could have grabbed her second from a similar position, only to miss her connection.

And then Sue Robinson intercepted a pass but fired her low shot wide of the target.

After a nervy start to the second period, Stone’s ladies dominated the remainder of the game. But Amanda Hilsdon’s powerful strike was superbly saved by the Southgate keeper to ensure the scores finished level.

– ROB ATKINS

n City of Portsmouth lifted themselves off the bottom of South League Hampshire/Surrey Regional Division Two with a 5-2 win over Salisbury.

Luke Helm (2), James Stevenson, Adam Bloomfield and Seb Martin all registered.