BRIDPORT suffered a blow to their South West Peninsula League Premier East title aspirations with a 2-1 defeat at Crediton United.

The Bees came into the game one point behind second-placed Crediton but now trail their Devon rivals by four points, albeit with a game in hand.

However, Chris Herbst’s men now lie 19 points behind runaway leaders Ivybridge, who have completed three more fixtures than the Bees.

In a first half low on chances, Bridport keeper Jordon Scadding saved well from Shay Corrick and Crediton’s Sam Stapleton also shot wide.

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Bridport, meanwhile, saw Sol Ayunga go close with two half-chances, Riley Weedon fired over the bar and Will Gape also tried his luck without success.

After both teams cancelled each other out, the second half was full of controversy.

Crediton took the lead in fortuitous circumstances when Darren Lock sliced into his own net after Creddy hit the bar.

Bridport levelled on 75 minutes through Kieren Daniels as he pounced on a parry by Ethan Chalk from Sol Ayunga’s shot, Crediton appealing in vain for offside after a three-minute conference with the officials.

Given how closely Bridport’s goal was scrutinised, the Bees then felt aggrieved when Crediton’s 85th-minute winner was allowed without similar question marks.

Bridport skipper Luke King kneed the ball towards goal and the Bees felt Harley Brook had safely cleared off the line, only for the linesman to give the own goal.

Bridport also earned a red card on the bench as coach Jim Lukosius was shown two yellow cards in quick succession for dissent.

Bees’ assistant Mark Lock told the Bridport News: “Maybe we should have held on from 1-1 and just shut up shop.

“You never know, it’s all calls you’re not sure about sometimes. Crediton have a few interesting games to play yet.

“They’ve got Ivybridge twice and Okehampton. They’ve got harder games coming up. There’s loads of time left for second and third.

“I don’t know about first place because Ivybridge won again and pulled away again. We’ve got to make sure we play better.

“Not playing for a few weeks, there were some players that looked not on full match fitness.”

Bees: Jo Scadding, Childs (Jones 64), King, Lock (Partridge 81), Brook, Calverley (Parsons 72), Gape (Owen 85), Daniels, Weedon, A Diaz (T Diaz 64), Ayunga.