A double from Gavin Massey, his first goals in senior football, earned Yeovil Town a creditable 2-2 draw against Colchester United at the WHC Stadium this afternoon.
The young Watford striker got his side off to a flying start with his first after just 42 seconds but goals from Andy Bond and Michail Antonio had given the hosts a narrow advantage. However Massey, who turned 19 on Tuesday, levelled matters midway through the second half.
And for the second game running, the Glovers were ruing the intervention of the woodwork as substitute Kieran Agard thumped a header against the bar with seconds left, a goal that would have lifted Terry Skiverton's men out of the relegation zone. As it is, the side remain in 21st place with nine points from twelve matches.
The manager made four changes from Tuesday's Johnstone's Paint Trophy defeat to AFC Bournemouth. Ed Upson and Luke Ayling returned from suspension and were joined in the starting eleven by Nathan Jones and Steve MacLean. The four who dropped out were Kerrea Gilbert, Curtis Haynes-Brown, Billy Gibson and Alan O'Brien.
The team and the travelling Glovers would have hoped for a good start but no-one could have dreamt just how well they would have started. Steve MacLean nodded down for Oli Johnson who ran on and got a shot in that was blocked by a defender. Massey then pounced and fired home through the keeper's legs for his first goal in his sixth appearance in the green of Yeovil Town.
The rest of the first half saw Colchester United in the ascendancy and enjoying the lion's share of possession without creating a plethora of chances. The clearest chance fell to a familiar face to Yeovil, the burly striker Kayode Odejayi (formerly of Cheltenham) who hit the upright with an effort that came quickly to him from a Jed Steer save.
Paul Huntington and Luke Ayling both bravely dived in with last ditch blocks as Skiverton's men put their bodies on the wall for their manager and the latter actually shed blood for the cause after a clash of heads with an opponent.
Though the game was still one-sided in favour of the Essex side, it took John Ward's side 38 minutes to even the scoreline. Awarded a free kick thirty five yards out, the ball was set up for Andy Bond to thunder in a shot that took a deflection and sent Steer the wrong way for 1-1.
The second period began in much the same fashion with the U's creating the odd chance and Anthony Wordsworth tested Steer with a shot that dipped late on. However the breakthrough wasn't long in coming and on 54 minutes, a Wordsworth cross was nodded in from close range by Michail Antonio off the underside of the bar.
The goal brought Yeovil out of their shells more and ten minutes later, Massey made it two apiece. Jones fed Ayling who in turn gave the ball to Max Ehmer. His run and shot forced Williams into a parried save but again Massey proved his goal-poaching credentials by finishing well.
As the drizzle continued, the game became niggly and untidy with referee Chris Sarginson issuing six yellow cards in the game. The pattern was stop-start with no clear cut chances for either side although for the home side, Ian Henderson blazed an effort over. As the U's pressed in the last quarter, they forced five quick corners; from one, sub Steven Gillespie bundled a header in but took keeper Steer with him and the goal was disallowed.
Kieran Agard had come on with nine minutes left for the tiring Johnson and the young forward nearly grabbed a fantastic last minute winner but saw his header crash off the crossbar for what would have been his fourth goal in five games. His chance came seconds after Magnus Okuonghae had missed a sitter from six yards for United.