Hitchin started this game with a very strong line up. No fewer than seven of the starting eleven had played in the play off final at Leamington and the extra experience certainly helped. Indeed the first half performance was very good with an urgency and quick tempo that had been missing on Saturday. The passing was shorter and crisper and the four goal interval lead could have been even more substantial.
Hitchin took the lead after just three minutes with Elliot Bailey scoring after a good move. The lead was doubled after sixteen minutes when Josh Bickerstaff powered home a header from a corner. Just two minutes later Brett Donnelly converted a Ben Walster cross before heading another chance just wide. Walster was unlucky to hit the bar and Lucas Kirkpatrick had a shot saved before Hitchin went 4-0 up after forty minutes when Bickerstaff notched his second of the night when he deflected home from a corner.
The second half was very disappointing though and the urgency was no longer there. After 53 minutes five changes had been made and the fluidity was gone. Four further changes were made and the youthful Biggleswade team hit back scoring after 67 and 88 minutes to reduce the arrears. One encouraging feature for Hitchin was that six of the Biggleswade squad were from our college programme.
So the Save Top Field Trophy was retained and perhaps the best news of the night was that £300 had been raised for the Moggerhanger hospice with a good number of Hitchin fans present.
Team – Bennett, Syme, Walster, Rolfe, Webb, Bickerstaff, Kirkpatrick, C Donnelly, B Donnelly, Bailey, McCaffrey; subs – Cotter 46, Green 69, Carbon 76, Coley 69, Barnes 72, Smith 53, Budden 53, Brooks 46, Dowie 46. Only Bennett and Webb played 90 minutes.
Goals – Bailey (3), Bickerstaff (16, 40), Brett Donnelly (18)
Attendance – approx. 100