HAVING not played in over a month-and-a-half, Highgate United made a welcome return to action and came from behind to earn a point at Loughborough University in the Midland Premier Division.
Playing for the first time in over six weeks following a run of eight consecutive postponements, Highgate drew 3-3 on Saturday afternoon in what was a thoroughly entertaining fixture, with Connor Mooney scoring a late equaliser.
The enforced break had seen both Shane Benjamin and Joe Adams depart for pastures new and Gate were also without captain Trevor Edwards who was serving a one-match ban.
The visitors did however welcome back Danny Lennon, Reece Lynch and Nathan Corry who all made a welcome return to the squad, while Colby Lewis-McAdam made his debut.
Ashley Pulisciano’s team started the brighter of the two sides with Lei Brown coming close with a powerful header and Nathan Edgington sent a volley over from the edge of the box before seeing an effort on goal blocked on the line.
The visitors went on to take a deserved lead on the half-hour mark when Tom Lacey’s free kick was cleared but the ball fell nicely for Lewis-McAdam who directed his ten-yard drive high into the top right-hand corner of the net.
Cameron Gordon saw a close range header saved by Bradley Catlow in the Highgate goal but the hosts were back on level terms at the break after Alun Webb was left alone at the far post to convert Ben Ward-Cochrane’s low driven cross.
A couple of half-time substitutions, with Lynch and Mooney replacing the injured Edgington and Lewis-McAdam, were too upset Gate’s rhythm and although Lei Brown was unlucky to see his header thunder against the bar, all the good work was soon to be undone.
The Students scored twice in the space of ten minutes to go 3-1 in front. On 48 minutes Dasaolu converted a cross from the left and soon after the same player burst through the Highgate defence before slipping home his side’s third goal beyond keeper Bradley Catlow’s reach.
Instead of capitulating, Gate rallied with Scott Turner glancing a header inches wide of Lancaster’s right hand post and with 20 minutes remaining Lei Brown put his side back within touching distance with a floating header into the far top corner of the net.
The task of getting something from the game was to prove more difficult when in 80th minute Lacey received his marching orders after picking up a second yellow card.
But Gate continued to work and were rewarded with an elusive equalizer two minutes from time. Aaron Brown’s header set up Mooney to drill a low and accurate 12-yard effort between Lancaster and the keeper’s right hand post to earn his side a point.
Highgate sit seventh in the table and entertain Littleton in the League Cup on Saturday.