A TEN-minute period in the second half cost Saints dearly in Saturday's top of the table encounter. An entertaining game saw several chances created in the first half - Saints' Darren Coles forcing a good save - but neither side could break the deadlock before the interval. After the break the students came out firing and scored three goals in quick succession to give St Neots a mountain to climb. The visitors did not give up in the face of adversity and Coles saw his powerful shot blocked on the line by a defender's chest, allowing Iain Moor to convert the penalty. Coles then scored one of his own to set up a frantic finale with Simba Chigwada just unable to reach a cross from the excellent Mike Rix to equalise. Saints' narrow defeat at the University followed a 10-0 defeat in a David and Goliath cup encounter at Chlemsford, a side littered with former and current international players. St Neots were unlucky not to get on the scoresheet in the game but Chelmsford's quality told. Meanwhile, St Neots II raced into a 3-0 lead inside 10 minutes of their fixture at March II but ended up hanging on for a 3-3 draw. Goals from David Silk, Steve Ridley and Danny Rowlands had Saints on top but March pulled one back just before half-time and two further goals after the interval had Saints in trouble, but they held on to secure a much-needed point. St Neots could even have snatched victory with the last action of the game but Ian Cunningham's shot came back off the March post. Next week Saints first XI return to Cambridge to take on joint leaders of the division, Cambridge Nomads.