BOSS Tom Killick pinned Poole Town's downfall against Chelmsford more on refereeing decisions than spurned first-half chances, writes Jack Tanner.

A late opener from Louie Theophanous and a brace from substitute Shaun Jeffers condemned Dolphins to a 3-0 defeat on the road and hit their hopes of finishing in the National South play-off spots.

Killick told the Daily Echo: “I thought the game was reasonably even. I’d probably say that in the first half we were the better side and in the second half we were unbelievably frustrated because a fair few decisions went against us.”

Marvin Brooks had the first period’s best chance when he latched on to Steve Devlin’s ball over the top, but fluffed his lines.

Killick said: “Marvin has been fantastic over the past two months and he has been really consistent in his finishing. He is entitled to miss one opportunity.

“Obviously, we rue those missed chances. When you miss chances, you don’t know if there is going to be any consequences. As it turns out, there were.

"If we had taken those opportunities, would the end result have been different? We’d like to think so.”

Theophanous bundled home 11 minutes from time, before a textbook counter rounded off by Jeffers put the game out of Poole’s reach.

An irked Killick believed the throw-in which had led to the opener had touched a Chelmsford player last, despite the referee signalling the other way.

The boss said: “It shouldn’t be of major significance but the fact it was a clear throw-in to us and went the other way is really infuriating. Add in the fact it was also a foul throw.

“I thought Chelmsford were a threat from set-pieces all game. We should have done better with it but it was the throw-in which killed us.

“As soon as we went 2-0 down we had to chase the game but there was a foul on our left-back (Jake Smeeton) in the build up to the third goal.

“Factors outside our control decided the game but to give credit to Chelmsford, they were much better in the second half after their tactical change. I just feel 3-0 wasn’t a proper reflection of the game.”

Defeat increased the pressure on Dolphins after closest rivals Hungerford cut to four points the gap with victory at Whitehawk.

Killick added: “There are 12 points to play for and that is a lot of points. Hungerford could win all four games or we could lose all of ours.

"It sounds clichéd, but so much can happen in that amount of time. That’s the reality of the situation.

“Today we feel deflated but we should try to look at the good stuff in the first half."

Dolphins: Hutchings, Moore, Smeeton, Spetch, Whisken, Pettefer (Cooper, 83), Burbidge, Devlin, Roberts (Gillespie, 64), Brooks, Baggie (Granger, 75). Unused sub: Rees (g/k).