MORECAMBE made it four points from two tricky away games with a draw their efforts just about merited at Accrington on Tuesday.
The Shrimps were urged on by 371 fans who clearly relished the chance to taste some derby atmosphere in a season that’s seen their side clock up the miles in trips to the remotest corners of the country.
They saw Morecambe enjoy plenty of possession and produce some neat passing play for long periods.
But it was the home side that had the greater incisiveness, never more clearly demonstrated than in the 14th minute when, against the run of play, returning Scunthorpe loanee Bobby Grant got the better of a tussle with Andy Parrish before whipping in a cross that was glanced home by the head of Peter Murphy to give Stanley the lead.
Stewart Drummond came close to a swift equaliser from an Izak Reid corner but his powerful header was tipped over by Lee Nicholls in the home goal.
Accrington are relying heavily on loan players as always this season and it was another, Jamie Devitt of Hull, who caused no end of problems in that first period, twisting and turning to give Reid and Will Haining a torrid time.
He almost made it two just before the break when Haining had his pocket picked in the middle of the park by Grant who played Devitt in to shoot for goal. Barry Roche got down well to block – the best of a handful of similar saves that prevented the game running away from Morecambe completely.
That high-energy first half was always going to be hard to maintain and The Shrimps took greater control after the interval, helped in no small part by the introduction of Lewis Alessandra, seeing more of the ball than young Jack Redshaw who had gone off with a hamstring tweak.
Alessandra occupied two and three defenders at a time with his trickery and contributed to the visitors’ growing dominance.
Yet, for all their possession and clever football, it was a pure route one ploy that brought them their equaliser.
Roche punted upfield for the tireless Danny Carlton who challenged Nicholls sufficiently strongly to make him lose sight of the ball and was then alert enough to stroke it into an unguarded net.
Efforts from Burrow, Alessandra and a mazy run by Andy Parrish - that ended with him striking a bobbling ball way over the bar - threatened to snatch all three points for The Shrimps.
But, with breakaway chances for Grant and Amond at the other end, it was, in the final analysis, a point both sides were happy to take.
Accrington: Nicholls, Coid, McIntyre, Nsiala, Kiernan, Joyce, Murphy (Lindfield 70), Barnett, Devitt (Hatfield 80), Grant, Amond (Craney 82). Subs not used: Dunbavin, Guthrie.
Morecambe: Roche, Haining, Reid, Hunter (Jevons 70), Burrow, McCready, Drummond, McDonald, Parrish, Redshaw (Alessandra 45) Carlton. Subs not used: Kettings, Fenton, Mwasile.