Poor cup record haunts Kingstonian
Kingstonian’s appalling recent history in major knockout competitions continued on Saturday as Alan Dowson’s team lasted just 90 minutes in this season’s FA Trophy.
Folkestone Invicta, struggling at the bottom end of Ryman One South, deserved their 2-0 win and £2,700 in prize money – a loss to Ks that may mean budget cuts as winter approaches.
Losing in the FA Cup first qualifying round at Margate had been damaging, but being knocked out of the Trophy at the opening hurdle was a disaster.
“We’ve been knocked out of two cups. They’re two cups that are worth a lot of money to the club,” admitted Dowson.
“It’s all very well saying we’re sitting OK in the league, but finance-wise, how are we going to find that money? If we have to let a couple go or drop people’s money then we’ll have to. So be it.”
The afternoon on the Kent coast had started brightly and if leading scorer Andre McCollin had not rolled his right-foot shot wide in the first-half, Ks would probably be in the draw for the second qualifying round.
Instead, Invicta grew into the game, taking a second-half lead through 18-year-old Johan Ter Horst, who pounced on a rebound after Phil Stevenson had hit the woodwork.
Horst, educated at the local grammar school behind the ground, made it two soon after, strolling between Kingstonian's normally reliable centre-backs and finishing past Rob Tolfrey.
It felt like a long 14 years since Luke Basford scored a memorable FA Trophy third-round winner for the Ks at Cheriton Road.
Still, the away side created chanced, substitute Dee Okojie the biggest culprit as his free volley landed nearer the corner flag than the net.
But Folkestone ultimately nullified the Ks' frontline by pushing up to leave McCollin off-side while Charlie Knight toiled on the wing to little avail.
Ks' return to league action next Saturday with a long trip to Lowestoft Town.
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