NICK Wright’s first goal for Mansfield Town rescued a point against BSBP bottom side Nuneaton Town at Liberty Way last night.
The Stags, who have still not won away since 18th August and have only picked up five away points from a possible 24, dominated most of the game but went behind on 50 minutes to a pearler from Connor Taylor.
At that stage it was a goal against the run of play and left Stags facing an embarrassing defeat away to a side that had only won twice all season.
But Paul Cox’s men were only in arrears for nine minutes as Wright poked home a Louis Briscoe cross.
Lindon Meikle and Junior Daniel both struck the home woodwork, but the BSBP new boys held on for a share of the spoils with Stags now only having won three times in nine games and still in desperate need of that elusive away victory, despite a dominant performance.
Meikle’s low near post cross forced a fifth minute corner for the visitors which was poorly taken by Clements and easily cleared.
On 11 minutes Hutchinson found Clements to his right who checked inside a defender before curling a decent effort which deflected wide of the angle.
That won a corner from which Stags built a decent spell of pressure, ending with keeper McNamara blocking a header from Hutchinson from Dempster’s ball in and then grabbing the loose ball before Wright could put away the rebound.
Stags continued their lively start with a good run from Meikle on the left which saw him drag a finish wide of the near post.
Another swift Stags move saw Meikle and Wright play quick passes to offer Briscoe a shooting chance which was blocked.
Nuneaton won a corner on 16 minutes, but the threat was snuffed out due to pushing.
The home sisde broke well from more Stags pressure with Dempster sliding in to concede the corner before a low ball in could reach Brown, who was coming in behind him.
On 23 minutes Meikle hit the bar for the second time in as many games as Wright rolled a square ball to him from the left and , from the edge of the box, Meikle’s rising right-footed blast hit the bar and sailed over.
There was more work for McNamara four minutes later. But Hutchinson’s low 25 piledriver was always straight at the keeper.
A good ball wide from Hutchinson sent Meikle to the left by-line and he picked out Hutchinson with his cross. But the header lacked power and direction and was again easy for McNamara to deal with as the half ended goalless.
The wind behind Mansfield’s backs had grown stronger as the first half wore on and the lack of distance on Redmond’s first kick upfield showed how strong it still was, but now in Nuneaton’s favour.
And the home side stole an unlikely 50th minute lead. Sutton failed to cut out a ball from midfield out to Taylor on the left. Coming inside, Taylor then picked his spot with a superb curling right-footed finish which beat Redmond’s fingertips and found the net off the inside of the post.
Sleath headed straight at Redmond soon after but an offside flag was raised.
Geohaghon nodded down the visitors’ first corner of the second half, but Nuneaton quickly cleared their lines.
That won another long throw opportunity for Geohaghon which saw cleared to Briscoe whose hurried first time shot was high and wide.
A goalkick from McNamara almost put in Brown but, with the wind behind it, sailed straight through for a goalkick, again underlining the conditions Stags were now up against.
However, on 59 minutes Wright marked his rare start with his first goal for the club.
Briscoe curled in a tempting waist-high cross from the right away from goal and Wright stole a march on the home defence to stretch out his right leg and stab the ball past McNamara from six yards.
Briscoe came so close to edging Mansfield ahead on 66 minutes.
Clements’ corner was cleared back to him on the right by-line. With two defenders chasing him down, Clements shaped to put the ball back across but, instead, rolled it back towards Briscoe 15 yards from goal and he rifled the ball across goal but just wide of the far post.
More Mansfield pressure saw Geohaghon play a return pass to Beevers who, 20 yards from goal, should have shot but tried to slip Wright into space and the ball was cleared.
The solid Dempster won the ball well and tried to get Meikle in, the keeper there first as the visitors plugged away gamely in their search for a winner.
Walker forced Redmond down to his right to gather a low shot from distance which was never going to beat him from there.
Forsdick was much closer 10 minutes from time as a loose throw from Geohaghon was picked up by the home side and Forsdick fired a good effort just wide of the far post with the keeper beaten.
Daniel replaced Briscoe on 85 minutes and, with his first touch seconds later, unleashed a superb 22-yard shot that McNamara did well to turn onto the top of his bar and over.
Green took over from Wright for the last three minutes.
In stoppage time Dempster sent a close range header straight at McNamara from Hutchinson’s cross which proved to be the final chance.
Before the game manager Paul Cox said Jake Speight, available again after a one-game ban, has had an injection in a knee injury and was rested with an eye on the weekend visit of Southport.
With no deal yet reached on extending Liam Mitchell’s loan from Notts County, Shane Redmond continued in goal.
Cox also revealed before the game that midfielder Solomon Taiwo, who had signed a one month deal with Stags, has now been released after just one start.