Chesterfield U21s ended their final Spring Cup group game with a last-gasp 3-2 defeat at Borrowash Victoria that, on the balance of play, was hard to take.
An entertaining first half saw both sides look comfortable on the ball without seriously threatening.
A quick two-goal salvo around the 40-minute mark changed all that and gave the home side an interval advantage after a strong low-down finish from centre forward Knight put the Vics ahead and Bell’s effort soon after sneaked home after keeper Dylan Wharton failed to claim cleanly.
The deficit at the break could have been less had Louis Czerwak (shown below) and Kian Tansley managed to capitalise on good openings.
The Spireites grabbed hold of the game in the second period and dominated from the re-start.
Ross McParland’s header was cleared off the line and just moments later Czerwak reduced the arrears by calmly hitting home from 15 yards.
The pressure was relentless but, as both Czerwak and Tansley shot wide, the equaliser was looking hard to find. With just six minutes remaining, Pharrell Waite poked wide and then, moments later, made amends by latching on to a superb through ball and calmly drawing the keeper before firing confidently home.
A draw looked likely until the home side’s 90th minute corner kick found the unmarked Knight at the far post who had the simplest chance to score.
The Spireites pushed on tirelessly but sadly couldn’t find another leveller.
Chesterfield: Wharton, Barrass (Rossiter 72), Barre (Charlesworth 61), Wilkinson (Turner 61), Blakeley, Whelan, Tansley, Spence, Murphy, Czerwak, McParland (Waite 72).
Unused Substitute: Bliss (GK).
CFC Goals: Czerwak 51, Waite 84.
Booked: McParland 66, Barre 67, Waite 83.