Crawley were not able to capitalise on last weekend’s superb win at Cheltenham as Stevenage won 3-1 at the Broadfield Stadium.
Four second half goals made the difference after a cagey first, with Alex Reid opening the scoring shortly after half time. Ollie Palmer made it two goals from two soon after, but an Alex Revell double sealed the points late on.
Harry Kewell named an unchanged starting line up from last weekend’s 1-0 win at Cheltenham Town, with Romain Vincelot retaining his captaincy of the side.
Contests between Town and Stevenage are often tight and this one was no different in a first half that saw little chances from either side. Kurtis Guthrie was perhaps the liveliest player for the Hertfordshire side, who tested Glenn Morris on two occasions.
Kewell’s formation allowed Josh Doherty to play higher up the field, and the Northern Irishman was linking up well with Dom Poleon, with the pair causing all sorts of issues on Stevenage’s left side.
Josh Payne had a deflected effort just before the break, but the half was a cagey affair with neither side able to take a foothold.
The second half saw an instant difference from the first with two goals inside the opening ten minutes of the half.
Some excellent counter attacking play from Stevenage saw them take the lead, as they broke with a cross finding Reid inside the area. The first half substitute headed brilliantly past Morris.
The Reds responded superbly from the restart and took little time in making amends as the ever-reliable Filipe Morais found Palmer inside the six yard box to double his tally for the season, and equalise with a replica of the goal that had put Town behind.
Kewell’s side did not look content with just the one goal and were straight out the traps looking for a second goal. Stevenage were finding it difficult to deal with the height of Palmer and strength of Poleon, who was unlucky not to find the target with a deflected shot inside the box.
Stevenage did have chances themselves to score the third goal of the game, with Reid coming close to doubling his match tally, but Glenn Morris did superbly to deny the striker at the final moment.
Morris was called into action again to deny the visitors twice, before Emmanuel Sonupe blazed over from six yards.
They put the Reds under heavy pressure and did indeed make it 2-1 when Revell rose highest to score the third header of the game.
A defensive mistake in stoppage time allowed Revell to make it three for the visitors and take the points back to the Lamex Stadium, but Crawley have the chance to put things right with a trip to Bristol Rovers on Tuesday.