FC Halifax Town came from two goals to draw 2-2 with fellow strugglers Southport in our first game under caretaker boss Gareth McLelland. An own goal by Matty Brown and a cool finish by Cole Stockton gave the visitors the lead before a familiar fight back by The Shaymen. Jordan Burrow scored a penalty before drawing level in the last minute with a header to salvage a point after an eventful week at The Shay.
Halifax started the brightest, with Connor Hughes having an effort tipped away by Andy Coughlin and Shaun Tuton wasted a good opportunity after good work by Hughes through the middle, but Tuton fired his effort well over the bar.
Southport then took their turn to enjoy a good spell, as Stockton saw his volley fly wide of the goal after a cross by Mike Phenix and Matt Glennon was forced into action after a goal mouth scramble.
On 24 minutes came a big talking point in the game. Phenix flew recklessly into a challenge with Hughes and referee Simon Bennett showed no hesitation in showing a straight red card to the Southport winger.
However, despite being a man less, it was the visitors who took the lead ten minutes later. Louis Almond raced away down the right wing, leaving all in his wake before curling a dangerous cross between Glennon and his defence and Brown was unlucky to be in the wrong place at the wrong time as he steered it into his own net.
Town responded five minutes with Jake Hibbs working a short corner before crossing into the area for Burrow but The Shaymen’s top scorer was denied a headed goal by a superb save by Coughlin.
The second half saw a flurry of goal mouth activity. On the hour mark, Southport doubled their lead as a through ball found the run of Stockton who shrugged off Julian Banton and Brown before picking out the bottom corner giving Glennon no chance.
It may be a different management set up but it was the usual story from The Shaymen as a late come-back rescued a draw. First Town were awarded a penalty in the 74th minute when Banton was brought down by Southport’s Josh Thompson. Up stepped Burrow, who made no mistake from the penalty spot, slotting under Coughlin.
Then with just a minute to play it was all level. After being subjected to a barrage of crosses, the Southport defence finally crumbled as Josh MacDonald’s cross was met by the head of Burrow who directed it past Coughlin to make it 2-2.
The game wasn’t over though and in injury time Glennon was forced into a smart save from substitute Jamie Allen, but The Shaymen held on to a valuable point.
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