Robins defeated on penalties in County Cup at Bishop's CleeveA young Cheltenham Town side was defeated 3-1 on penalties by Bishop's Cleeve at Kayte Lane this evening.
The Robins let a two goal lead slip in the second half and missed a series of chances to wrap up the game before suffering a collective seizure in the penalty shoot-out.
Zack Kotwica, James Bowen and Danny Reynolds all missed from the spot and although Andy Haworth finally scored, Bishop's Cleeve striker Joe Tustain capped a fine performance with the winning penalty.
Both teams had chances in a lively opening to the game with Tustain seeing a low shot held and driving a volley wide. At the other end, Haworth shot just wide after beating two men and missed the target with a close-range volley from a Bowen cross.
The stalemate was finally broken on 28 minutes when Jamal Lawrence displayed impressive pace onto a through ball and beat goalkeeper Gavin Jones from a tight angle.
Cleeve striker Harlie Price displayed great control to take down a long ball but placed his shot wide and then, seven minutes into the second half, Cheltenham appeared to put themselves well in control when midfielder Reece Daly sent a curling shot from the edge of the area just inside the far post.
However, two goals in two minutes brought the tie level with Tustain heading in from a perfect Ed Major cross just before the hour mark.
The game had barely re-started when Tustain ran onto a through ball from Nick Rhodes and beat the out-rushing Matt Gould with a low shot.
Jack Deaman almost sliced a clearance past his own goalkeeper from a Rhodes cross but Cheltenham went on to dominate the remainder of normal time without finding a way to goal.
Jones saved well from both Haworth and Zack Kotwica; then and Lewis Thompson headed wide from a Bowen free-kick. In the final minute Kotwica shot wide from close range and the tie went to penalties with Bishop's Cleeve earning the right to face Shortwood United in round two.
BISHOP'S CLEEVE (4-4-2): Jones; Ngoma, D.Sherry (C.Sherry 62), Millard, Hopkins; Sholly (Evans 57), Rhodes, Dodd, Major; Tustain, Price. Other subs: Parker, Magee, Evans, Gnadji
CHELTENHAM TOWN (4-2-3-1): Gould; Craddock (D.Reynolds 84), Deaman, Rowe, Bowen; Daly, Mendes; Haworth, Thompson, Kotwica; Lawrence. Other subs: H.Reynolds (Gk), Lymn, Goodwin, Dinsmore