IT PROVED to be a Bank Holiday weekend to forget for Coventry Sphinx after they tasted back-to-back defeats in both the FA Cup and Midland Premier League.
Luke Hopkins’ side kicked off their weekend with a trip to Rugby Town in the preliminary round of the FA Cup where they lost 1-0.
A Mason Rowley header on the stroke of half-time proved to be the difference at Butlin Road in a match that saw home debutant Ashley Bodycote earn his first clean sheet.
The hosts started on the front foot with Sam Warburton twice threatening the Sphinx defence with his pace before David Kolodynski seized upon a short back pass from Ashley Jackson but having rounded Sphinx goalkeeper Carl O’Neill, the out-of-touch striker could then only help the ball the wrong side of the frame.
At the other end it was a relatively quiet baptism for Bodycote, although one of the five ex-Valley men in the Sphinx starting line-up – Lewis McBride – did send a header just over the bar from a deep looping cross.
Craig Kelly, Danny Clifton and Rowley all had chances before the latter made no mistake when he met Kelly’s free-kick into the box to head powerfully past O’Neill in first half stoppage time.
Town carried on where they had left off after the break, with Kolodynski flashing one across the face of the goalmouth and O’Neill doing well to keep out a Tom Liversedge effort at close range.
Another ex-Townee Avun Jephcott blazed over from a few yards out for Sphinx before Ashley Cain forced Bodycote into a fine save with the young goalkeeper denying the former Coventry City player from close range.
Robbie Banks came close from 20 yards out but that signalled the end of the visitors’ best spell of the game and it was Town that ended the tie the stronger but they were unable to add to their total.
Hopkins’ side were hoping to bounce back on Bank Holiday Monday at home to Bardon Hill in the league and they looked on course when goals from Tom Bates and Luke Downes handed them a two-goal lead at the break.
But Sphinx conceded three second half goals to go down 3-2 which leaves them 12th in the table after five matches.
Elsewhere, in Division One Coventry United remain five points clear at the top of the table after winning both of their matches over the weekend.
Gift Mussa scored the only goal of the game during a 1-0 win over Perhsore Town on Saturday and on Monday two late goals by Connoll Farrell and substitute Charlie Cook earned United a 2-1 win at Leicester Road.