STAFFORD HC firsts went down 5-4 to Redditch in controversial circumstances last weekend.
In more or less repeat of the season’s first fixture, Stafford's poor discipline saw them press the self-destruct button in the second half.
Stafford scored within the first five minutes when James Gillingham's smart deflection was parried by the goal keeper but Charlie Trotter slotted home the rebound.
Redditch then equalised after Simon Parnell got turned by his player who then passed to a man out wide to slot home.
An unsavoury incident then occurred when Adam Kyle was grabbed around the neck by a Redditch player, the umpire showed a yellow card when most people including the player himself expected a red.
Stafford began to play better hockey, Randall Moore powering an unstoppable reverse stick effort into the roof of the net. Just after the break, Ben Hollands made it 3-1 with a similar effort.
Unfortunately after this, physical play by Redditch seemed to get to Stafford and their frustration showed in their responses to the umpires.
A number of temporary suspensions to Stafford players, saw them play most of the second half with only nine players on the pitch.
Stafford had reacted just as Redditch expected and the flood gates opened, Stafford conceding four goals.
Adam Kyle pulled one back near the end but the contest was over.
Stafford are a team who like to play expansive, attractive hockey but they need to learn how to cope with the pressure when things are going against them.
This Saturday, Stafford go on the road visiting Kingswinford in a West Midlands One fixture.
Other hockey fixtures: Midlands One, Stone v Stourport.
West Midlands One, Telford and Wrekin 2nds v Stone 2nds, Stafford 2nds v Redditch 2nds, Stone 3rds v Streetly 3rds.
West Midlands Two, Pershore 3rds v Stafford 3rds.
North-West 2, Wolverhampton 4ths v Stone 4ths, Stafford 4ths v Old Wulfrunians 4ths.