Report by Rob Binns
Woodbridge Town fell to a 2-0 defeat away to playoff-chasing Dereham Town despite an impressive performance.
The Peckers matched the Magpies in all areas but two set piece goals in two first half minutes from Charlie Clarke and Sam Watts condemned them to defeat.
The hosts thought they took the lead after 13 minutes when Jordan Buttle broke down the left and crossed for Clarke to finish at the back post but the linesman judged him to be in an offside position when he tucked it home.
The Peckers first sight of goal came three minutes later when Andrew Crowe rose highest to meet a deep free kick that was launched into the box but the keeper was equal to his header.
Dereham almost took the lead in the 26th minute when a long free kick was headed clear by the Peckers but it came out to Buttle to strike on the half-volley from outside the box. His effort whistled just wide of the top corner.
Woodbridge went close in the 32nd minute when Kelsey Trotter nipped in on a poor pass across the Dereham defence. He broke into the box and drilled a low effort across the keeper but it went narrowly wide.
The Magpies took the lead in the 38th minute when Jamie North’s free kick was blocked by the wall but he was fastest to the loose ball and crossed for Clarke who headed home across the keeper.
Two minutes later they doubled their lead as the Norfolk sunshine saw the Peckers lose sight of a wide free kick allowing Watts to head home unchallenged into an empty net.
Dereham missed a big chance for a third in the 52nd minute when Max Melanson clipped a ball in to the unmarked Buttle at the back post but he missed the ball as he attempted to turn it home.
Dereham could have easily gone down to 10 men when goalkeeper Tom Coombe handled outside his area with five minutes to go. The linesman on the near side flagged it up but the referee opted to overrule, instead giving the hosts a free kick for an alleged foul on Coombe.
The Peckers overall performance didn’t warrant a defeat but some sloppy defending from set pieces were ultimately punished. Certainly positives to take into Ely City’s visit to Notcutt’s Park next weekend despite the result.
Dereham: Coombe, Pitcher, North (Kelly 90), Melanson, Watts, Skipper, Sweeney (Eastuagh 76), Lake (Gascoigne 79), Clarke (Cook 90), Spooner, Buttle (Gilham 76)
Woodbridge: Barnes, Harvey, Rea, Southgate (Panich 68), Allen, Leggett, Trotter, Wiggins, Crowe, Clark (Monteith-Weed 45), Keeble