St Ives Town manager Ricky Marheineke was left seething after his side threw away more precious Southern League Premier Division points.

Charlie De'Ath conceded the late penalty that condemned St Ives Town to defeat at Merthyr. Picture: LOUISE THOMPSONCharlie De'Ath conceded the late penalty that condemned St Ives Town to defeat at Merthyr. Picture: LOUISE THOMPSON

Saints were undone by two late goals as a 2-1 advantage turned into a 3-2 defeat at Merthyr Town last Saturday – an outcome that left Marheineke’s post-match mood even more volatile than the earthquake to hit that part of the world in the build-up to the game.

His men were masters of their own downfall as they squandered a stack of fine chances before skipper Charlie De’Ath needlessly conceded a stoppage-time penalty which settled the contest.

“I’m very angry, I’m very frustrated and I’m very disappointed for the majority of the players who performed well,” said Marheineke.

“We matched Merthyr in the first half before dominating a large part of the second half, ye we have ended up losing a game in which we should have been out of sight.

“Leaving with nothing is not good enough and I’ve let the players know exactly that.”

Saints fell behind after a quarter-of-an-hour to an Owain Jones effort but levelled courtesy of a Danny Watson spot-kick in the 28th minute after loan ace Tom Knowles was sent tumbling.

The turnaround was completed just after the hour by Ben Baker, but Ollie Snaith, Knowles and Watson all failed to take excellent chances to put the result beyond doubt during a spell of second-half dominance.

Saints paid the price when Kerry Morgan levelled for Merthyr with eight minutes to go before another glorious one-on-one opportunity for Watson went begging as the contest looked set to end in deadlock.

But Marheineke’s men were stung by a self-inflicted late twist as De’Ath dragged down a player running away from goal and Ian Traylor made no mistake from the spot.

“Any team that fails to take their chances at this level runs the risk of being punished as we were,” continued Marheineke. “That’s especially true if they don’t defend their own box properly.

“I had a word with Charlie about what happened in the dying moments because conceding a penalty in that way is not acceptable.

“There is no doubt that we threw three points away.”

Saints remain third-bottom of the Premier Division after a third successive defeat.