PENDLE Forest suffered back-to-back defeats over the weekend to dent their hopes of a top three finish in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Conference North.

On Saturday, Forest slipped to a 6-5 defeat at fellow high-flyers Timperley then, in a rearranged clash with University of Nottingham, went down 3-0 to the leaders 24 hours later.

On Saturday, the heavens opened but it also rained goals as Pendle Forest just missed out in an 11-goal thriller.

Forest fought back from 4-1 and 5-2 down but ran out of time as they slipped to an agonising 6-5 defeat at third-placed Timperley.

Timperley took an early lead when they earned a penalty corner in the opening five minutes and, following a goalmouth scramble, Samantha Hargreaves turned the ball home.

The home side were causing Forest all sorts of problems down the flanks and doubled their lead at the end of the second quarter when Dana Bettany got on the scoresheet.

Forest hit back and a good strong drive by Freya Bythell in midfield found Charlotte Hartley, who forced a good save out of the keeper but Alice Charles followed up to score.

But they were left facing an uphill battle when Timperley scored twice in three minutes, Hargreaves stretching to flick the ball over the line before Rosie Atkinson found the bottom corner from a penalty corner routine.

Forest changed tactics and pulled a goal back when a deceptive ball sent in by Lisa Crewe allowed Hartley to deflect it in.

But as tensions rose, Hartley was sin binned just before half time for dissent.

Forest ploughed on but it was Timperley who made it 5-2 with a bottom left strike from Rosie Atkinson.

Once again, Forest hit back with a penalty conversion with Crewe slamming the ball into the top corner of the net to make it 5-3.

This time it was Timperley who had a player sent off for stick tackling allowing Forest to edge closer when Hartley deflected the ball in from a cross to cut the gap to a single goal.

Forest now had the upper hand for a while, sending balls up to the wingers Hayley Baines and Alice Charles allowing them to gain ground as Timperley tired.

They still tried to play the long balls forward but the defence was strong with Sam Parker, Deb Bythell and Olivia Purtill working solidly across the back helped out by Olivia Bythell - although she did receive a green card for dissent which was upgraded to a yellow on leaving the pitch.

And from another penalty corner routine Timperley went 6-4 up with Bettany scoring her second.

Forest replaced their keeper, Emma Jackman, with an extra player in a last ditch attempt to get back in the game and did just that through Crewe but, despite a late onslaught, Forest could not find the equaliser.