Diss Town become just second team to lose to Needham Market Reserves in the Thurlow Nunn League First Division North
Diss Town’s woes on the 3G playing surface continued on Saturday as they crashed to a 2-1 defeat away at bottom-of-the-table Needham Market Reserves.
The Tangerines, who had won their two Thurlow Nunn League First Division North fixtures under new manager Jon Abbott, had already lost away at AFC Sudbury Reserves and Haverhill Borough on artificial pitches this term.
And it is now three from three after hosting Needham picked up just a second league win of the season.
The early action at Bloomfields saw shots from outside the penalty area by both teams well held – Keiran Hagan for Diss and Ethan Abrahams forcing Finlay Shorten and Kingsley Barnes respectively into early action.
Shorten threw the ball out in the 14th minute but only found Hagan 25 yards from goal. He moved into the penalty area but slipped as he attempted to change direction and go past a defender to get into a clear shooting position.
Two minutes later Charlie Webb used his strength to win the ball and move into space after Stephen Vincent and Ryan Beeston linked up well down the left. Webb hit a lofted shot which Shorten palmed up and quickly dived to catch the ball as it approached the goal line.
Webb also came close to breaking the deadlock just before the break when he moved on to another good pass from Beeston and hit a low shot from 10 yards out, which Shorten blocked with his feet.
Needham started the second half in an attacking mood and took the lead in the 51st minute when Jose Santa beat the offside trap and moved on to a through ball to send a fine shot into the corner of the net.
The hosts were now winning the midfield battles and Barnes made two fine 59th minute saves after Diss had been opened up with ease. He did well to block a shot from Santa and in the next action made a diving save to a shot from Zach Scott.
Up the other end Diss’ central defender Jack Tipple was only denied an equaliser in the 67th minute when his header at a corner was headed off the line by a defender.
However, Diss did manage to equalise 10 minutes later when Reece White played the ball down the right wing for Hagan to move on to. He sent a low cross in from near to the corner flag, Shorten spilled the ball at the near post and Connor Kerry applied the finishing touch from inches out.
Diss had two fine chances to take the lead late in the game; Tipple played a fine pass along the floor for Hagan to move into the area and play the ball across for Josh Lucraft to shoot high from 10 yards out and Webb headed over when unmarked eight yards out at a corner.
The killer blow was struck four minutes into added time when it seemed that the game would be drawn.
Diss conceded an unnecessary free-kick for a foul in the attacking penalty area. Shorten played the ball out and it eluded a number of players as it moved deep into the other half of the field for Santa to collect and round Barnes as he raced out of his area to try to cut out the danger. Santa was able to advance and send the winner into an unguarded goal.
Diss, who are 14th and seven points clear of the bottom two, host second-placed Mulbarton Wanderers