OSSETT UNITED had to settle for another league draw last weekend as they were held 1-1 away at mid-table AFC Mansfield.
Karl Jones had given them an early lead but they failed to take any of the chances that followed, and were punished with a controversial equaliser from Kieran Wells.
It was unclear whether the ball had crossed the line, but the goal was awarded and Ossett failed to produce a response as the points were shared.
Goalkeeper Brett Souter said of the goal: “From where I saw it was very tight, but we can’t be letting our runners go.”
On the game as a whole, the stopper admitted that “it feels like a loss.”
“I didn’t have that much to do (apart from) a couple of saves, but we need to take chances, and that’s not just from the front lads, but all the way to the back.”
The game got off to a scrappy start, but Ossett managed to take their first real chance. Jones was played in down the right, and he hit a fine low shot across goal into the bottom corner to give them the lead after 15 minutes.
There were still a few good chances from either side in the first half, with Adam Priestley’s low shot forcing a save from Mansfield goalkeeper Jason White on the half hour mark.
They began to take charge more towards the break, and came close when Priestley had a chance down the right cleared and Tom Corner failed to connect with the ball back in, with Ross Hardaker blazing the rebound over.
Souter had to make a good save on the brink of half-time though, as the sides rested with one goal between them.
United came out with far more purpose at the start of the second period, although Hardaker couldn’t take their first chance after great work from Corey Gregory had played him through.
Hardaker then had his curled shot tipped wide by White, before Jones had a good chance to register his second of the game but aimed straight at the goalkeeper.
Ossett were looking far better and had control of the game, but they badly needed a second goal.
Adam Porritt came close with a low shot from outside the area, before Priestley did have the ball in the back of the net, but the effort was ruled out for offside.
The sucker punch came three minutes after that as Wells scored the controversial equaliser to bring Mansfield level, completely against the run of play.
The visitors struggled to find the same rhythm that they had before the goal. A succession of corners put pressure on, with Priestley’s shot bringing another before Corner’s header narrowly missed the target from the next.
Captain James Burke struck over from distance as time began to slip away from United, and they were unable to break Mansfield down in the final minutes as the game ended all square.
It was a sixth draw this season for Ossett, but manager Andy Welsh believes that more wins will come.
“It’s one game lost in 11, not that we want to harp on about that,” he said.
“We’re about winning games and we want to win games, we go into games looking to win.
“I thought today we created a number of chances that, any other day, go in the back of the net.
“At the minute we’re just not getting that luck in front of goal, but we’re not losing games, and I think as the season goes on, I’ve no doubt about the players in there that they’ll turn those draws into victories.”
The manager praised the impact that Karl Jones has had since his arrival, after the striker bagged a second goal in three matches.
“I think he’s been a breath of fresh air to be honest,” said Welsh. “The way he brings others into play, his hold up play, and I thought his goal today was excellent.
“It’s just unfortunate again that we’re talking about injuries; he picked up a knock on his thigh (in his) first game, and I think three minutes into the game today somebody’s gone through him and it’s caught it again and opened it up again.
“He managed to get the early goal for us, but from there he was struggling after half-time because it had stiffened up.
“Jones has come in and I think that he has done really well, and he’s going to bring goals to the table which he has done in three games (where) he’s had a hand in all three goals.”