DAVID SMITH - Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Joseph Bendik made a rare start for Sogndal as they fell to Grenland on an early penalty while Mikkel Diskerud and Stabaek suffered yet another disappointment at home against Haugesund.
Odd Grenland 1 - 0 Sogndal IL
Joseph Bendik was in the nets for Sogndal for only his fourth start of the season, however was unable to stop the deciding penalty in their narrow loss to red-hot Odd Grenland.
Bendik was given the start over usual first-choice keeper Nils Kenneth Udjus who had taken a slight knock in a friendly game several days before, and put in a fine display in helping to prevent any goals coming from the run of play.
The only score of the game came midway through the first half, when Sogndal right back Mats Solheim fouled forward Elbasan Rashani in the area, allowing veteran defender Morten Fevang to sent the resulting spot kick out of Bendik's reach for the winner.
Despite the loss, 15th-place IK Start's failure to win their game against Viking mathematically secures Sogndal's place in the Tippeligaen next season.
They will finish their season on Sunday afternoon at home against already-crowned league champions Molde FK.
Stabaek IF 1 - 2 FK Haugesund
Mikkel Diskerud put in his usual 90-minute shift in Stabaek's midfield on Sunday, as their late rally from a two-goal deficit fell short at home against Haugesund.
Haugesund opened the scoring three minutes past the half-hour mark when
Brazilian midfielder Daniel Bamberg lined up for a free kick from the left side, and slipped it around the wall an just inside the far post for 1-0.
The visitors' lead was doubled just before the hour again with Bamberg playing a part, as his shot from outside the box was parried by Stabaek keeper Jan Kjell Larsen directly into the path of Alexander Søderlund, who lunged out to poke it over the line.
Stabaek kept their heads up and grabbed what was ultimately nothing more than a consolation goal with two minutes left. A series of short passes coming in from the right side ended with Vegar Vegar Eggen Hedenstad slipping a short pass to the onrushing Gilles Ondo at the edge of the six-yard box for an easy score.
The loss assures that Stabaek will finish the season in the bottom half of the standings. They will close their season on Sunday with a trip to eighth-place Valerenga.
Sean Cunningham was not selected for Molde's bench in their 3-1 win over last-place Sarpsborg while Josh Gatt is out with injury and also did not suit up for the hosts.