Beavers Rocked in Bognor
The Beavers went down to their first league defeat since November with a lacklustre display against Bognor Regis on Saturday.
The match took a fair bit of time to get going as both sides attempted to pry open stubborn defences and it took until the 12th minute for the first shot on target, Ollie Pearce's gentle overhead kick easily caught under the cross bar by George Legg.
After Alex Parsons had fired well wide some 3 minutes later, the Beavers finally had their first chance on 20 minutes, as Federico's cross cum cross as deflected goalwards by Brendan Kiernan.
Play was dominated by the stolid defences, neither side having another serious chance until the 40th minute when Nicke Kabamba's drive was tipped over the bar. The players all made for a corner but the referee amazingly gave a goal kick, despite everyone else on the pitch and in the ground clearly seeing the deflection of keeper Grant Smith's upraised arm.
The game was struggling under the weight of its top match status but the blue touchpaper was lit on 50 minutes when Pearce was dismissed for a studs up challenge on Josh Casey that on another day might well have seen a yellow card.
Bognor stepped up their play, and the Beavers didn't appear to be able to respond and the introduction of Rutherford on 70 minutes had an impact on the game as he started to get the Rocks moving.
4 minutes later, Rutherford happened to be in the right place at the right time as the Beavers didn't clear their lines after a scramble in the 6 yd box, the ball rolling into his path. The youngster needed no invitation to lash it home.
Charlie Moone and Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick were introduced almost immediately afterwards, but you could sense the game was already over as the Rocks defended well, and made sure the Beavers left empty-handed,
Bognor Regis Town: 1 Grant Smith, 2 Harvey Whyte, 3 James Crane, 4 Doug Tuck (Gary Charman 88'), 5 Chad Field, 6 Sami El-Abd, 7 Stuart Green (Snorre Nilsen 65'), 8 Dan Beck, 9 Jason Prior, 10 Ollie Pearce, 11 Alex Parsons (Alfie Rutherford 70')
Subs: 12 Alfie Rutherford, 14 Calvin Davies, 15 Snorre Nilsen, 16 Gary Charman, 17 Craig Robson
Hampton & Richmond Borough: 1 George Legg, 2 Tom Jelley, 3 Josh Casey, 4 Kieran Murphy, 5 Moussa Diarra, 6 Eddie Hutchinson, 7 Jerome Federico (Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick 75'), 8 Dean Sinclair, 9 Nicke Kabamba, 10 Brendan Kiernan (Charlie Moone 75'), 11 Jamal Lowe
Subs: 12 Michael Kamara, 14 Charlie Moone, 15 Dan Thompson, 16 Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick, 17 Joe Hicks