Barnsley Reserves 1 - 1 Town Reserves. Pontin's Holidays Premier Division. YOUNG Michael Collins scored his first senior goal for Town as the Reserves came from behind to draw with Barnsley at Oakwell yesterday.
The Republic of Ireland youth cap from Halifax was on target in the 58th minute, turning the ball home from close range after Nat Brown had chested down a long throw.
John Dungworth's side had gone behind nine minutes earlier when Aaron Hardy mistimed a clearing header and Tom Baker raced free to score.
Once they were level, Town had the better chances to win in an evenly-fought Pontin's Holidays Premier Division clash and could have bounced back from their only defeat of the season (to Tranmere at home) with another three points.
The best chance fell to the hard-working Dwayne Mattis, who benefited from another Brown flick but couldn't keep his shot on target when unmarked eight yards from goal.
Mattis then sent a cracking 20-yard drive curling inches over the angle as Town maintained the pressure, while Barnsley keeper Danny Alcock was relieved to hold a firm back-post header from Brown.
At the other end, Town defended solidly with John McCombe's no-frills style catching the eye and Martyn Booty using all his experience to break up attacks and encourage his younger teammates.
Collins and Chris Evans were always eager in the wing-back positions while Youth Cup captain Hardy made some strong tackles and did well considering he was booked in only the 19th minute for a late challenge on Baker.
Barnsley had the edge in the first half when Phil Senior had to be alert to deny efforts from Baker, Chris Lumsden and Rory Fallon in succession.
Brown went close with a header across goal for Town, but it wasn't until the second period that they got on top, with Mattis, Brown, Matthew Young and Joe Walsh doing their best to prompt.
Youth winger James Hand, too, got valuable experience as a substitute left wing-back before Walsh went off with an ankle injury treated by Dave Buckby, the former assistant physio back to help out after losing his job during administration.
Walsh's injury allowed young David Walls to make a first appearance at this level.
Town - Senior, Collins, Evans (Hand 69), Hardy, McCombe, Booty, Thompson, Mattis, Brown, Young, Walsh (Walls 87). Subs not used: Caulfield, Giles, Walker.