Lowestoft Town 1 Worcester City 1
- Credit: James Bass
Jake Reed's last-gasp strike salvaged a point to move Lowestoft Town a step closer to safety in the Conference North.
The Blues hit-man struck in the third minute of injury time to rescue a draw after Daniel Nti had given Worcester City the lead midway through the second half.
Reed's goal sparked joyous celebrations but these soon turned sour when Worcester goalkeeper, Nathan Vaughan, and Rossi Jarvis grappled on the floor prompting a 20-man melee.
Referee Anthony Da Costa handled the situation well and, once calm had been restored, gave both Vaughan and Jarvis their marching orders.
The draw puts Lowestoft on to 44 points, seven outside of the relegation zone, ahead of Monday's trip to struggling Leamington.
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Lowestoft were almost caught cold in the second minute when Tristan Dunkley latched on to Ellis Deeney's long throw-in but his first-time effort slammed into the side-netting.
The let-off appeared to galvanise the Blues though and Reed came within inches of opening the scoring in the sixth minute but Lee Smith's cross just couldn't quite pick out the Lowestoft hit-man.
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With Robert Eagle pulling the strings in midfield Lowestoft carried more of an attacking threat and the former Norwich City man was involved in a flowing move which ended with Reed's goalbound volley being superbly blocked by Jacob Rowe.
Only Deeney was impressing for the visitors, who retreated further and further as the half progressed. Adam Smith's quick-thinking almost caught Worcester goalkeeper, Vaughan, out when his 40-yard free-kick flew just wide when everyone was expecting a cross.
But the best chance of the half came five minutes before the break when a lovely interchange between Reed and Eagle, saw the latter go through on goal but his left-footed effort was too close to the goalkeeper and Vaughan was able to palm his shot away.
Lowestoft completely lost their tempo in the second half and Worcester hit the front in the 68th minute when Nti headed home Vaughan's free-kick from inside their own half.
Nti almost repeated the trick a minute later but headed just over the bar from Joao Sousa's cross whilst Mike Symons came close to extending the visitors' advantage with a shot from the edge of the area that Ashlee Jones tipped round the post.
But Lowestoft rallied in the closing stages and rescued a point late on thanks to that man Reed. Vaughan couldn't claim Lee Smith's free-kick into the penalty area and when the ball rolled to Reed he made no mistake from eight yards.
A melee ensued as Jarvis and Vaughan tangled on the ground as players from both sides got involved. When order was restored both Jarvis and Vaughan were given their marching orders.
- Lowestoft Town (4-2-3-1): Jones, Ainsley, Sowunmi, Gaughran, A Smith, Fisk (Okay 62), Jarvis, L Smith, Eagle (Woods Garness 85), Henderson (Bammant 79), Reed. Subs not used: Okay, Haynes-Brown, Marsden.
- Worcester City (4-4-2): Vaughan, Haynes, Elvins, Rowe, Weir, Nti, Deeney, Denny, Sousa (Veiga 90), Symons, Dunkley (Brown 82). Subs not used: Charles, Taylor, Smith, Veiga.
- Referee: Anthony Da Costa
- Attendance: 694