TWO hugely controversial decisions by referee Barry Cropp saw Colwyn Bay beaten 2-0 at home by in-form Stourbridge.
After a bright start the Seagulls faded as an attacking force against a visiting side that were on a six-match unbeaten run, but with Chris Sharp and Kevin Holsgrove both going off injured, they were defending heroically, with new loan keeper Louis Gray outstanding in goal, only for the referee to award a very contentious penalty against them on 66 minutes for what looked a fair tackle by Rob Hopley.
Hopley seemed to clearly to play the ball, but Bay’s protests were in vain and the experienced Karl Hawley scored from the spot.
Ten minutes later the referee sent off Zac Corbett for a second yellow card, but worse was to follow when Rob Hopley looked to have equalised with a great header from a corner with three minutes remaining – only for the referee to disallow it, presumably for pushing.
With the Bay still reeling from what looked another very harsh decision, Stourbridge went straight up the other end and secured the points with a second goal from Justin Richards.
The referee also sent off Stourbridge substitute Alex Penny in added time, but that didn’t prevent him being booed off the pitch by furious Bay fans at the end.
Manager Ash Hoskin said later: “I have no idea why he gave the penalty and no idea why he disallowed Hoppy’s goal. I’ve tried to speak to him afterwards, but he refused to see me.”
Videos of the two big decisions show Hopley cleanly won the ball in the tackle and his ‘goal’ was a clean header with very little contact, if any, with the defender.
Despite the defeat Colwyn Bay remain two points clear of the bottom four.
Colwyn Bay: Gray, Denson, Corbett, Dillon (Matthews 68 mins), Barnes, Holsgrove (Brewster 73mins), Dowling, Marsden, Sharp (Rodgers 45mins), Hopley. Williams. Subs not used: Lea and Love.