Harrogate Town opened their second season in the National League, with an exciting 2-2 draw against last season’s runners up, Solihull Moors.
The tall, physical Moors were quickest out of the blocks,and Town’s keeper,James Belshaw had to make two vital, early saves,as Nathan Blissett and then,Paul McCallum broke through the central defence.
However, Town hit back with a Joe Leesley free kick that just missed the far post,after a foul on Josh Falkingham.
The Moors were given a great chance to take the lead,when Jamie Osborne cut in from the left, only to be brought down by a combination of Jack Emmett and Brendan Kiernan.
Luckily for Town,McCallum blasted the spot kick high over the bar, which brought the biggest cheer of the afternoon.
An excellent ball from Emmett released Kiernan down the right wing, but his flashing drive was diverted wide.
Unfortunately, on 34 minutes the Moors aerial assaults paid off,when Terry Hawkridge’s corner was headed back across goal by Liam Daly and Blissett beat Belshaw with a well placed header.
As the first half belonged to the visitors,the second period was dominated by Town.
Two goals in two minutes turned the game on its head.
Firstly, on 55 minutes Mark Beck rose highest at the far post to head in a Leesley corner,and then Leesley himself,lashed a superb strike from fully thirty yards,with visiting keeper,Ryan Boot, merely a helpless spectator.
The Moors were in no way subdued and equalised nine minutes later,when Lee Vaughan got behind the home defence and crossed for McCallum to head past Belshaw from close range.
With twenty minutes left. it looked as though it could still be Town’s day, when Jack Muldoon was bundled over in the penalty area.
Kiernan stepped up to the plate,but like McCallum before him,he too,skyed well over the bar.
Ryan Fallowfield,Lloyd Kerry and Jon Stead,were introduced as Town strove for a late winner.
Kerry had a looping header easily caught by Boot, but soon,a dangerous centre from Fallowfield found the head of Kiernan in front of goal,only for Boot to pull off a point blank save to ensue the Moors went home with a point.
Harrogate Town 2 Solihull Moors 2 Att. 1045
,Belshaw,Smith,Falkingham(c),Burrell,Emmett(Kerry 71),Beck,Leesley,Kiernan,Muldoon(Stead 81),Hall,Smith(Fallowfield 68).
Unused subs,Cracknell,Brown. Man of the Match, Kiernan.
Scorers,Beck 55,Leesley 57. Booked Leesley,Kiernan
Scorers,Blissett 34 McCallum 66. Booked Storer Att.1045
By John Harrison