An entertaining but ultimately disappointing game at Plainmoor saw the Gulls score two but concede three in a frustrating afternoon.
A double from Yemi Odubade and a strike from Enver-Marum put pay to United’s hopes of bouncing back from some poor performances on the road.
Player-manager Kevin Nicholson made one change to the side that lost against Boreham Wood 2-0. Midfielder Damon Lathrope replaced Joe Ward who dropped to the bench.
United started brightly. Damon Lathrope tried his luck from the edge of the box but Maidstone ‘keeper Lee Worgan was right behind it. Blissett bullied Maidstone defender Sweeney into giving up the ball but his strike went wide of the post. Jamie Reid continued United’s lively start with a strike that was blocked inside the area.
Maidstone punctured United’s positive mood when they opened the scoring in the 15th minute. Yemi Odubade was on the spot when a free-kick was deflected into his path after a header from Aman Verma. The experienced forward beat Moore and scored his first goal for Maidstone.
Maidstone doubled their lead in the 19th minute. Liam Enver-Marum received a flick on from Alex Flisher and had time to beat Moore from close-range.
Nineteen minutes and United were two down. However they took stock and started to play.
A corner from Luke Young found Giancarlo Gallifuoco but his side-foot effort clipped the post.
United took the game to Maidstone for the remainder of the half. This paid dividends in the 38th minute when a pass by Luke Young sprung the offside trap for Nathan Blissett to get away and score past Worgan.
United headed into the half-time break with some hope that the game could be turned around.
Maidstone made that job even more difficult soon after the game resumed and United contributed to their own downfall.
Odubade was there again to make sure after his first shot was saved by Moore and the ball fell kindly for him to give Maidstone a two-goal advantage once again.
Once again, United struck back, this time through Dan Sparkes.
Lathaniel Rowe-Turner’s cross found Nathan Blissett. Bliss’ couldn’t get a clean contact on the ball but Sparkes was there to prod home and give United some hope.
Luke Young struck a fine free-kick in the 59th minute but Worgan punched the ball clear.
Player-manager Kevin Nicholson brought Sam Chaney on for Damon Lathrope in the 68th minute and the young midfielder had a positive impact. Joe Ward and Chay Scrivens were also brought off the bench as the Gulls pushed for an equalizer.
United broke on Maidstone as the final whistle beckoned. Dan Sparkes couldn’t find the finish as the ball broke to him on the edge of Maidstone’s penalty area. His side-footed effort went wide of the far post.