GRAHAM Turner's FA Trophy stars failed to repeat their cup heroics in the Nationwide Confer-ence at Stevenage's Broadhall Way on Monday.

After a goalkeeping gaffe gifted them the lead after just 76 seconds, they conceded an equaliser minutes before the break and the winner eight minutes from time.

The Bulls enjoyed the perfect start as Matt Clarke's seemingly harmless deep cross was palmed into his own net by goalkeeper Paul Wilkerson.

The visitors went close to extending their lead when Wilkerson atoned for his error by denying John Snape with his legs and brilliantly tipping over Jimmy Quiggin's follow-up. Gavin Williams nearly capitalised on more Wilkerson eccentricities when the home keeper rushed out of goal but his audacious effort from near the touchline flew just wide.

After this bright start, the rest of the half was rather flat until the Bulls conceded an undeserved equaliser two minutes before half-time. A cross from former Welsh international midfielder David Phillips flicked off Tony James and Stevenage top scorer Darran Hay gleefully headed home.

United keeper Scott Cooksey had a lucky escape in injury-time when his clearance smacked against the unfortunate James and just out of reach of a Stevenage forward.

Stevenage scorer Hay headed wide a John Hamsher cross as the home side came out more determined for the second period. But they were indebted to important last-ditch tackles from defenders Rob Miller and man-of-the-match Mark Smith to deny Williams and Quiggin.

The hosts then threatened as Adrian Clarke's 25-yarder flew just over and Hay was unable to make a telling connection to Paul Armstrong's cross.

Wilkerson repeated his madness of the first 45 minutes when he accidentally threw the ball against the referee and Ian Rodgerson will have been disappointed that his lob sailed the wrong side of the post.

Cooksey did well to tip over a Hay piledriver and Phil Robinson gratefully hacked a Smith header off the line from a Phillips corner.

But Stevenage finally grabbed a second goal in the 82nd minute when the diminutive Armstrong headed in a Phillips free-kick.

Hereford: Cooksey, Clarke, Sturgess, Robinson, Wright, James, Quiggin, Snape (Parry 84 mins), Elmes, Williams (Bull 84 mins), Rodgerson, (Giddings 69 mins). Subs not used: Wall, Baker.

Attendance: 1, 265.