Deeping Rangers 2 Newport Pagnell 2: A RARE double from defender Kris Jones rescued a point for Rangers as they produced a thrilling comeback on Saturday.
Jones netted twice in the last 12 minutes as Deeping came from two goals down at Outgang Road – and they nearly snatched a winner in added time.
Still, player/boss Tuncay Korkmaz – who enjoyed a rare outing as a substitute for depleted Deeping – was delighted with the spirit shown by his side.
He said: “I’d have taken a point before the game, Pagnell are one of the top teams in the division. But it’s strange, we could have nicked it at the end so it could have been better.
“It was a great effort from the lads to battle back and they proved we can mix it with the bigger teams.
“With a couple more signings in the new year we could have a really competitive side.”
With a host of regulars missing, Korkmaz handed debuts to on loan Boston United goalkeeper Aaron Butcher and defender Kevin Ainslie, while striker Sam Bettinson made a surprise return in attack.
Newport took a 12th minute lead with a stunning solo effort from Lewis Wilson.
It was then down to Butcher to keep Rangers in the hunt, as he made string of super saves on his bow.
However, he was powerless to prevent Daren Dykes’ 22nd goal of the campaign after the break.
Deeping didn’t let their heads drop though, and Jones pulled one back with a fine header from Dan French’s free kick on 78 minutes.
A mix-up in the Pagnell defence then allowed Jones to rifle home a cracking leveller in the closing stages, before Scott Bogusz spurned a golden opportunity in injury time.
Deeping: Butcher, Bogusz, Ainslie, Jones, Thomas, Tinkler (Korkmaz, Leisner), Pascu, Stevenson, Bettinson, Harrold, French.
•Tonight - St Ives v Rangers (7.45pm); Sat - N Spencer v Rangers (3pm).
•DEEPING are looking for a manager to boss a reserve team in the UCL League next season. Contact Haydon Whitham on 07736 548500 or email email@example.com before January 31.