Barnstaple Town suffer fifth straight Southern League loss at home to Winchester City

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BARNSTAPLE Town slipped to their fifth straight Southern League loss today.

Winchester City were the latest team to inflict a defeat on Barum and leave Mill Road with all three points as they ran out 3-1 winners.

The reverse means Barry Yeo’s men have only won one of their last 10 Division One South and West games and are just five points off the bottom two – after Wantage Town took a point from their game at AFC Totton.

Having lost their last three by just a solitary goal, Barnstaple found themselves 3-0 down after just 33 minutes in this one.

Jack Jenkins and Lee Francis had both fired just wide for the hosts, while James Mayne’s glancing header was well held in a positive start.

But following Mayne’s header, Winchester – who reached last season’s play-off semi-finals – charged up the other end to open the scoring.

There were 23 minutes on the clock when Joe Briggs played in captain Stuart Green who beat Steve Oliver in the corner.

Just 60 seconds later the lead was doubled as striker Craig Feeney found space and smashed past Oliver.

Winchester’s devastating 10-minute spell was completed when Howard Neighbour tucked home a penalty to make it 3-0. It came after Craig Allan upended Feeney in the box.

Barnstaple knew before the game that a victory over City would have lifted them above their opponents, and whatever Yeo said at the break had an immediate impact.

Jenkins – who had a strike from distance comfortably held by Lewis Noice shortly before half-time – reduced the arrears with a fine volley from outside the box six minutes into the second period.

Francis came close to a second goal seven minutes after that, but his strike was straight at Noice.

Barnstaple were working hard to try and get themselves back into the game, but they couldn’t find the final touch to ignite a comeback.

Instead it was Winchester who saw the game out to secure a vital three points and end their poor league run of four defeats in five.

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