Pools Youth Team picked up a creditable point as they held league-leaders Hull City to an entertaining 2-2 draw at Blackhall on Tuesday afternoon.
However, they produced an excellent performance to claim a draw against a dangerous Tigers outfit and could even have taken all three points having created the clearer opportunities.
The game started quietly but Pools were on top in terms of possession; Dylan Armstrong fired the first effort on goal after pinching the ball thirty yards out but his shot went over the top.
Jordan Jewson’s snapshot from twenty yards went just the wrong side of the post, before the lively Jack Blackford stung a shot just wide of the visitors’ goal as Pools began to look more menacing.
Their dominance was rewarded on the half hour mark when the ball was worked in to the box for Armstrong and he laid to square for Scott Howes who picked his spot with a composed, low finish.
The lead lasted only a minute though as City won a free-kick twenty-five yards out and Jake Buckle stepped up to curl a wonderful shot over the wall in to the top corner to make it 1-1.
Jewson volleyed over from a tight angle and Blackford came close to restoring the lead as Pools ended the first half on top and went in to the break full of confidence.
It was therefore a big blow that the visiting side took the lead just minutes after the restart; Pools failed to deal with a corner from the right and Buckle was on hand to finish from close range to score his second of the game.
John Hewitson’s youngsters kept on battling though during a second half in which chances didn’t arrive as regularly as they had in the first; City almost made it 3-1 with a shot which grazed the side-netting.
However, Pools levelled things up when the excellent Blackford jinked his way to the byline on the left of the area and pulled the ball back across goal for Connor Smith who finished decisively low in to the bottom corner.
Pools were forced to make a couple of late changes as injury struck keeper James Dawson and full-back Jonny Carr but they still carried a threat and kept City at bay at the other end as the game ended all-square.
“We had a great spell in the second half where I felt we had them on the wrack really,” Hewitson told us afterwards.
“Once we got it back to 2-2 we had a few openings where our final ball just hasn’t been good enough and I feel like we’ve let them off the hook.
“We’re disappointed that we didn’t win the game but in the grand scheme of things it was a good performance against the side that are top of the league.
“The lads should grow in confidence on the back of what they have done today and now we have to take that in to Saturday’s game and have a right go at Scunthorpe.”
Full Time: Pools 2 Hull City 2
Pools: Dawson (Catterick 80), Carr (Briggs 80), Skidmore, Turnbull, Howes, Smith, Green, Jewson, Blackford, Armstrong, Wood.
Sub not used: Richardson.