Leverstock Green’s winning run came to an end when they slipped to a 5-2 defeat away at Biggleswade United.
Green had won six games in a row and were unbeaten in eight going into Saturday’s clash, one of only two matches to survive the icy weather in the SSML Premier Division.
The fifth-ranked home side were well-deserving of their win and were much the better side, playing some excellent passing football around the box which the Green side could not cope with.
Levy boss Scott Dash was also without several key players, including Curtis Donaldson, Jonathan Lacey, Scott Bonner and Brima Johnson, although new signing Jack Waldren from Kings Langley made his debut.
Leverstock certainly made a good start, with Ross Adams hitting a dipping shot just over the bar in the third minute after an exchange of passes with David Lawrence.
In the seventh minute a poor clearance by the home keeper gave the ball to Waldren, who delivered a great cross for Matt Bateman to send a header into the top corner of the net and give Leverstock a 1-0 lead.
But the lead was short-lived, with Biggleswade’s Nick Elliot going down in the box under a challenge from Luke Nugent three minutes later. The referee awarded a penalty and Abraham Eze duly netted the spot kick to level the scores.
A further blow occurred three minutes later when Levy skipper Shane Wood picked up an injury and was unable to continue. Curtis Bird replaced Wood in what was now a very young back four. A moment of hesitancy in this defence allowed Eze to score his second in the 17th minute after he nipped in to get on the end of a ball across the box and shot into the top corner for a 2-1 Biggleswade lead.
Leverstock pushed for an equaliser, with Bateman having a header saved in the 23rd minute and Chris Marsh hitting a chip just over the angle of post and bar a minute later.
The turning point came three minutes before the break when it looked as though Leverstock had equalised when Marsh swung in a free-kick and Bateman headed home, but a questionable offside flag from the linesman cut short the celebrations.
Within seconds the ball was in the net at the other end when Eze beat two defenders before slipping the ball past Levy keeper Matt Evans to complete his hat-trick and send his side into the break with a 3-1 lead.
Biggleswade continued to impress with their passing football in the second half, and only a series of excellent saves from Evans prevented them from increasing their lead.
Leverstock didn’t look like getting back into the game until they pulled a goal back in the 77th minute. Waldren’s corner found Ross Adams sliding in with an effort which took a big deflection on its way in and put the game back in the balance at 3-2.
But three minutes later Lee Bilcock slid in at the far post to meet a cross in the 80th minute to put Biggleswade 4-2 up and a minute from time a solo run and shot from Charisma Agyemang completed the rout at 5-2.
Leverstock stay in sixth place after the defeat and will look to bounce back with this Saturday’s visit to 14th-ranked Holmer Green.