A mixed Aldershot Town squad fell to a disappointing 4-3 defeat in the Hampshire Senior Cup against Moneyfields FC at the Moneyfields Sports Ground.
Manager Danny Searle opted to go with a number of changes in a 4-4-2 formation, with players like Alfy Whittingham and Aaron Eyoma, along with academy prospects Harry Woodward, Ryan Hall and Ryan Suckling given the chance to impress from kick-off.
However the game started in the worse possible way, with Moneyfields taking the lead early on through winger Connor Hoare in the 9th minute.
The Shots responded to falling behind with a couple of chances of their own, but it wasn’t long before Moneyfields went further ahead in the 23rd and 31st minute.
Goals from Ryan Pennery and captain Lewis Fennemore looked to have knocked Aldershot Town out sooner rather than later with the first three chances for the home side.
However, the Shots showed great determination and persistence to fight back from a three-goal deficit to bring things back to 3-3 before half-time.
A brilliant free-kick from Mo Bettamer started the comeback in the 40th minute, with the striker quickly doubling his tally just minutes later with a tap in, after great work from strike partner Harrison Panayiotou.
A third and arguably best goal came from the influential Alefe Santos, as the Brazilian finished off a slick Aldershot Town move in the 41st minute, with a well taken volley just inside the area after a fantastic cross in from Woodward.
This goal ended what was a frantic first half as the Shots looked to take advantage of their momentum in the second half.
However, the second half was a complete contrast of the free-scoring first half with the only goal coming in the 78th minute courtesy of recent substitute Danny Burroughs.
Noticing on a minor error between Ryan Hall and his defender, the midfielder lifted the ball over the young goalkeeper to give the home side the lead once again.
After conceding a fourth, it saw an array of promising Aldershot chances, but the best of the opportunities to equalise in the 88th minute fell short.
It was captain for the game Kodi Lyons-Foster’s header from a corner that saw the Shots’ chance to bring things back level again, go inches wide of the post, almost symbolising Aldershot’s near moments throughout the 90 minutes.
Even the late substitution of returning creative midfielder James Rowe wasn’t enough, as the Shots fell to a disappointing 4-3 defeat, despite a number of promising performances from academy players and first-team players in need of minutes.
Aldershot Town now have a small break to prepare for their next game in the National League, away to Dagenham & Redbridge on the 16th November in just under two weeks’ time.
Moneyfields FC: 1 J Hallett (G/K), 2 C York (Burroughs 66’), 3 C Bailey, 4 J Raine, 5 J Ford, 6 S Pearce, 7 C Hoare, 8 L Fennemore (C), 9 R Pennery, 10 J Briggs, 11 R Lloyd.
Unused Subs: Jatta, Giddings, Poate
Aldershot Town: 1 R Hall (G/K), 2 H Woodward, 3 R Suckling, 4 A Whittingham, 5 Trialist (Wylie 88’), 6 K Lyons-Foster (C), 7 A Santos (Rowe 62.’), 8 A Eyoma, 9 M Bettamer, 10 C Shields, 11 H Panayiotou (Trialist 55’).
Unused Subs: Booth, Omoliabi