Hereford 3 Dagenham & Redbridge 2: Michael Cheek goal in vain as Daggers suffer shock FA Trophy exit at Bulls
PUBLISHED: 17:03 17 December 2017 | UPDATED: 17:04 17 December 2017
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FA Trophy first round: Hereford 3 (Murphy 18, Smith 27, Symons 76p) Dagenham & Redbridge 2 (Deaman o.g. 30, Cheek 70)
Dagenham & Redbridge endured more woe in the first round of the FA Trophy after going down 3-2 at Hereford of the Southern Premier.
Daggers were beaten 2-1 at home by Bostik Premier side Worthing at this stage last season, and suffered a similar fate this term.
After falling two goals behind midway through the first half, the Essex club battled back to restore parity with 20 minutes remaining.
However, a penalty for the Bulls with less than a quarter of an hour remaining proved decisive, sending the Victoria Road outfit packing in the first round for the second successive campaign.
Boss John Still made one change for the clash, with Charlee Adams replacing Craig Robson in midfield.
Daggers fell behind in the 18th minute when Hereford midfielder Billy Murphy fired past stopper Mark Cousins from 25 yards.
Eight minutes later, the Essex club conceded a second when Lance Smith capitalised on a poor clearance to net.
With 15 minutes left in the half, there was a glimmer of hope for the Victoria Road outfit after Bulls defender Jack Deaman turned the ball into his own net.
In the 70th minute, Daggers drew level when a cross from substitute Dan Sparkes was not fully cleared, allowing Michael Cheek to tap into an empty net.
The sides did not remain level for long, with Mike Symons converting a penalty for Hereford six minutes later.
The Essex club pushed hard for an equaliser, with Corey Whitely drawing a save from stopper Max Harris with nine minutes remaining.
Two minutes later, replacement Mason Bloomfield was found in the box, but his effort was comfortably collected by Harris.
The Victoria Road side, though, were unable to find an equaliser, and will look for a response when they host Eastleigh in the National League on Saturday.