Bideford were on the end of a heartbreaking defeat to Evo-Stik Division One South leaders Blackfield and Langley on this afternoon (Saturday).
Lerone Plummer’s goal in the fourth minute of stoppage time saw the visitors steal a 1-0 victory and leave the Sports Ground with all three points.
Plummer, who had looked dangerous for the title chasers all afternoon, capitalised when Joe Moore’s fluffed catch landed at his feet. His lofted finish had just enough on it to beat the recovering Toby Down and bounce into the back of the net.
Bideford would have felt they would have deserved a point from a match in which neither side was able to completely get the edge. The defeat leaves them 11th in Division One South with four games to go.
The Robins started a first half which they just about had the better of with plenty of intent.
Ian Sampson, who was pushed further forward in the absence of Sean Downing, found himself in space 25 yards out inside three minutes, sending a powerful shot just over the bar.
Jordan Ricketts went close for the Robins a few minutes later when he latched on to a flicked header from Ryan Turner, but the forward’s low effort from wide was saved by goalkeeper Lewis Noice.
Plummer was lively for the visitors and perhaps should have given Blackfield and Langley the lead when he dispossessed Sam Haynes and ran in from the halfway line, but the forward sent his shot wide.
Plummer found himself with the ball at his feet in front of goal amid a goalmouth scramble after half an hour, but some last gasp defending from the Robins kept him from getting a proper shot off.
Sampson went close for the Robins again in first half stoppage time after linking up with Haynes down the right.
The game opened up in the second half with both sides exchanging efforts. Plummer had a penalty appeal waved away by referee Richard Lawrence when he was perhaps better placed to take a shot.
Ricketts had a couple of efforts at the other end. The first, a low shot while facing away from goal was saved by Noice. The second, a shot from 20 yards, was wide.
The league leaders started taking charge in the final 30 minutes. Liam Robinson should have broken the deadlock when he latched on to a ball behind the Bideford defence, only for his shot to skip past Joe Moore and wide of the post.
Moore then produced a couple of saves to keep the game at 0-0, one from Plummer at the near post after he stole the ball off James Mayne and got past Toby Down. The second came with his feet after a close-range effort.
Blackfield and Langley should have sealed all three points in stoppage time when a long kick from Noice saw Plummer go through on goal. His lofted effort was wide but fell perfectly for substitute Bearwish, who with almost all of the goal to aim at, put his side-footed shot into the side netting.
For his work keeping the scores tied, Moore was culpable for the game’s winning ball, spilling the ball for it to fall at the feet of Plummer, who was able to convert.
Bideford: Moore, Sampson, Palmer, Haynes (Hancox 71), Mayne, T Down, Heeney, Reay, Turner, Ricketts (Randall 71), Tucker (Carter 84). Subs not used: Taylor, J Down.
Blackfield and Langley: Noice, Baughan, Oatley, Oloumyiwa, Poole, Tomsso, Robinson, Doe (Bearwish 67), Plummer, Nolan, Makhloufi (Gunson 76). Subs not used: Sharp, Waterfield, Hill.