DOGGED Hayes & Yeading United showed in the Setanta Shield the kind of never say die attitude that took them to the top of Conference South but it could not prevent them crashing out of the competition at the second round stage away to Thurrock.
Garry Haylock rested six regulars and United came from 2-0 and 3-2 down only to lose out 5-4 on penalties after extra time. And the cost of missing out on substantial prize money in the later rounds was further compounded by injury to several players as United finished with only 10 men against nine for Thurrock, who had two sent off.
Leon McKenzie and Mark Wright put the hosts two-up after 30 minutes before Josh Scott netted from the penalty spot after he was tripped by Thurrock keeper David Blackmore, who had an eventful night.
Scott Fitzgerald grabbed an 87th minute equaliser to seemingly take the tie into extra time but there was plenty more incident to come before that arrived.
Three minutes into stoppage time Che Stadhart headed Thurrock back in front but six minutes into time added on Black-more quite literally handed United a life-line.
The keeper had the ball in his hands and the referee had the whistle in his mouth to end the game when Blackmore lashed out at Fitzgerald, leaving the referee no option but to award a second penalty and dismiss the keeper for violent conduct, allowing Scott to convert his second penalty in the 98th minute to take the tie into extra time.
United soon lost their man advantage when Tom Cadmore departed injured with all substitutes used but regained it when Stadhart received his second caution for a crude tackle on Scott.
Neither side could find a winner before it came down to a penalty shootout and after the first nine were converted Kieran Knight missed.
Northwood were unable to make up ground in Ryman One North after hosts Thamesmead Town came from behind to win 2-1.
Abdul Yoki put the Woods ahead just before half-time but the South London side hit back through Richard Dimmock and Rikki Cable to claim the points.