Pools lost out 3-2 to Bromley on an entertaining, but ultimately disappointing afternoon at The Vic.
Craig Hignett’s side fell the wrong side of five goals in a game that saw plenty of positive play from Pools.
But Hignett’s men will be left to rue mistakes at the back which saw Bromley leave the North East will all three points.
It was a fast-paced and energetic first half here at The Vic, with four goals and plenty of action.
With their first attack of the game, it was Bromley who opened the scoring after just nine minutes. Luke Coulson broke forward down the right to slip a low ball through for Michael Cheek who finished clinically low across Ben Killip to make it 1-0.
It took Pools less than five minutes to get the equaliser as Gavan Holohan fought to win the ball on the edge of the six yard box, which fell kindly for him and the midfielder rifled a finish into the roof of the net.
With much of the action flowing from one end to the other, Bromley had a chance to re-take the lead shortly after when a corner into the box was met by Joe Kizzi whose header lead to a scramble in the box but Killip got down to claim possession.
Holohan intercepted a ball in the middle to get Gime Toure away down the left; after being forced out wide, the striker pushed into the area to shoot low through a crowd where his shot was blocked out.
The lively Reeco Hackett-Fairchild sent a cross into a packed penalty area from the left only to be denied by Fraser Kerr who met the ball to send it out for a corner.
The following corner came into the box from the left and Hackett-Fairchild got his goal as he capitalised on some hesitation from Pools to poke the ball home from close range and give his side the lead once more.
The action continued to flow and a Nicky Featherstone corner was smashed towards goal by Mark Kitching, who watched his shot from distance go wide of the post.
Porter tried his luck at the other end with a strike from distance that was parried by Killip, with Hackett-Fairchild’s follow-up sent wide.
Pools were level again just before half time as Gus Mafuta took matters into his own hands as he picked up the ball 25 yards out and curled a fierce shot past Mark Cousins and into the bottom corner of the net.
Niko Muir had the first chance of the second half as he got through to send in a shot from just inside the box but a fingertip touch from Cousins took his strike onto the near post, where it bounced back into play.
Toure showed his power as he somehow forced his way between two Bromley men before skipping past another to fire at goal from a tight angle. His shot was blocked at the near post by the keeper but it was good work by the striker.
Ryan Donaldson cut in from the right to send a cross in that sailed across the face of goal, just waiting for a final touch to send it over the line but it went unchallenged.
With 75 minutes on the clock, Bromley broke to re-take the lead for the third time; a long diagonal ball into the box was picked up by Kizzi who beat Killip to it and squared for Hackett-Fairchild who was able to slot home into an empty net to make it 3-2.
While Pools had looked full of promise prior to the third goal, chances were limited after the visitors had got in front for a third time.
And so the game finished in a disappointing defeat for Pools who had shown plenty of attacking flair this afternoon but were punished at the other end of the pitch by a determined Bromley outfit.
Full Time: Pools 2 Bromley 3
Attendance: 3171 (37 Bromley)
Pools: Killip, Kioso, Kerr, Raynes, Kitching (Kennedy 90), Donaldson (James 79), Mafuta, Featherstone (Noble 85), Holohan, Muir, Toure.
Subs Not Used: Bale, Crichlow-Noble.
Bromley: Cousins, Kizzi, Wood, Holland, Coulson (Rees 53), Raymond (Clifton 77), Cheek, Bingham, Bush, Porter (Okoye 72), Hackett-Fairchild.
Subs Not Used: Mekki, Klass.