THE Shrimps picked up their first point of the season with a tough draw at Mansfield Town.
Jim Bentley’s side had raced to an early two goal lead after goals from Sam Lavelle and Lewis Alessandra but a Nicky Maynard goal just before the break and a 72nd minute header from Danny Rose saw both sides earn a share of the spoils.
Shrimps'’ boss Jim Bentley made three changes to the side that lost at Grimsby on the opening day with Andrew Tutte, Kevin Ellison and Cole Stockton coming in for Alex, Kenyon, Rhys Oates and Shaun Miller.
Mansfield started well as Otis Khan tried his luck from the edge of the box but it was Morecambe who struck early.
After a deflected, long-distance strike in the fifth minute, Morecambe were able to recycle possession and profit from space at the back post.
John O’Sullivan put in a cross from the right and Lavelle beat his marker to direct a firm header in the back of Conrad Logan’s net and give his side the advantage.
Mansfield hit back with Maynard seeing an effort blocked and Matt Preston heading off target.
Morecambe always looked dangerous on the break and added a second on 21 minutes.
Kevin Ellison drilled a superb angled pass towards Alessandra whose header looped beyond Logan and gave his side room to breathe.
Adam Buxton almost made it 3-0 with a stunning free kick from inside his own half that beat Logan but crashed off the crossbar.
It was a let off for Mansfield and they made the most of it, pulling one back six minutes from the break.
The ball landed at the feet of Alex MacDonald and, despite his effort being palmed away by ‘keeper Barry Roche, it rebounded towards Maynard who halved the deficit with a simple finish.
The Stags picked up where they left off in the second half, with Maynard forcing a timely block, before Krystian Pearce directed a header agonisingly over the bar.
Neal Bishop then watched his own header wide as Mansfield seemed to be creeping closer to the desired equaliser.
The midfielder, soon after, slid through Khan but the eventual cutback was hooked clear by Luke Conlan.
The hosts edged ever closer when Gordon’s teasing delivery would have surely resulted in another goal for Rose had it not been for a last-ditch clearance by Lavelle.
Another massive point came on 71 minutes when Cole Stockton hit the post and moments later the ball was in the back of the Morecambe net when Alex MacDonald’s cross was met by Rose who powered a header into the far side to level the scores.
Mansfield continued to produce the pressure with Rose going close again before they saw Matt Preston shown a straight red card for a poor challenge on Alessandra.
Buxton and Andy Cook both had shouts for penalties waved away as the game ended all square.
MANSFIELD: Logan, Benning, Preston, Pearce, Bishop, MacDonald, Khan, Maynard (Sweeney 84), Gordon, Hamilton, Rose (Cook 88).
UNUSED SUBS: Stone, White, Donohue, Sterling-James, Smith.
MORECAMBE XI: Roche, Buxton, Conlan, Old, Tutte (Kenyon 76), O’Sullivan (Cranston 67), Alessandra, Stockton (Miller 76’), Ellison, Wildig, Lavelle.
UNUSED SUBS: Halstead (GK), Sutton, Oates, Brownsword.
REFEREE: Chris Pollard
ATTENDANCE: 4,465 (110 away)