Match Report: Barnet 2-2 Morecambe
COLE Stockton struck again to earn the Shrimps a good point at the Hive.
The on loan, on fire, Tranmere striker, who was recalled to the starting line up after getting over his virus that ruled him out at the weekend, scored with nine minutes to go to give the Shrimps their first draw of the season.
The game started at a frantic pace with Morecambe hitting the post after just five minutes through Paul Mullin.
However, two minutes later Barnet went in front when John Akinde latched onto a Michael Nelson pass. He still had plenty to do but found a way past Barry Roche to put Barnet in front with a well-taken finish.
The lead lasted just four minutes. Morecambe, for the second time, thumped the post through Tom Barkhuizen who was on hand to head home with Jamie Stephens already grounded by the initial effort.
That setback did not deter Barnet who nearly re-took the lead within two minutes.
A good Mauro Vilhete ball to the back post was knocked down by Jamal Campbell-Ryce. The covering Morecambe defender took the safety first approach and hooked over his own crossbar.
Morecambe hit the woodwork for a third time in the 16th minute when midfielder Michael Rose strode forward an arrowed a shot towards the top right-hand corner.
Three minutes later the Shrimps repeated the trick as Stockton cracked the base of the post with a low left-footed effort.
Stockton then tested Stephens with fierce left-footed drive which Barnet’s keeper did well to beat away.
The chances continued to flow. First Alex Nicholls scampered into the penalty area and brought a good stop out of Roche at the near post.
Then, from the resulting corner, Akinde nodded back across the face of goal but saw his effort flicked off the line by Kevin Ellison.
The Bees’ frontman was not to be denied though and put Barnet back in front in the 31st minute.
Collecting a misplaced backwards header to the edge of the Shrimps' penalty area Akinde held off his marker and clipped over the onrushing Roche.
After a frantic first half an hour that was the way it stayed until the break and it was Barnet who remained on top after the restart, nearly stretching their lead when Jemal Campbell-Ryce whipped an enticing low cross to the far post where a lunging Akinde almost connected.
A better chance was to come, Campbell-Ryce sitting up an inviting ball to the back post for Akinde. The hulking forward made a good connection with his head but was denied by a fine reaction stop from Roche.
Next to try his luck was Vilhete, the Portuguese scampering forward and letting fly with a low shot which Roche diverted around the post with his feet.
The Shrimps drew level with ten minutes remaining.
James Jennings’ cross from the left fell for Stockton who stabbed in at the near post to grab the visitors a fine equaliser.
Both sides went for the three points with the ever dangerous Akinde drilling a shot wide at one end and Ryan Edwards forcing a save from Stephens in the 90th minute but in the end both had to settle for a point.
Barnet: Stephens, Johnson, N'Gala, Nelson, Vilhete, Weston, Togwell, Akpa Akpro (rep Gambin 87), Nicholls (rep Batt 83), Campbell-Ryce, Akinde. Subs not used: Vickers, Watson, Sesay, Taylor, Shomotun.
Morecambe: Roche, Wakefield, Edwards, Winnard, Jennings, Kenyon (rep Murphy 78), Rose, Barkhuizen (rep Molyneux 68), Mullin (rep Dunn 66), Ellison, Stockton. Subs not used; Nizic, McGowan, Conlan, Massanka.
Ref: G Ward