Cottesmore AFC draw with ProChance Academy in the Leicestershire Senior League Premier Division
A hectic finish to the season showed signs of taking its toll on Cottesmore as they were pegged back by a second half equaliser at ProChance Academy on Saturday.
The Rutland side had led through a goal from Eathan Milne on the stroke of half-time before Oliver Jagroop levelled for the hosts after the break on the artificial surface at Quorn on Saturday.
However, the point from their third game in seven days still maintained Cottesmore's hopes of a top three finish ahead of another midweek outing at Desford tonight (Tuesday).
Boss Rich Giblin said: "We are on a bit of a treadmill at the moment with game after game and it was evident on Saturday that we were tired.
"It was probably the worst game we could have had after playing on Wednesday night to be facing a team of Academy teenagers on a 4G pitch.
"They knocked the ball around really well and were very tidy in everything that they did. The only thing that they were lacking was that little bit of decision-making which will come in time with experience.
"We huffed and puffed but they were just a little bit quicker to the ball and on the turn than us."
Cottesmore had created a couple of half chances in the first period before they took the lead just before the interval.
Harry Stannard knocked the ball into Milne's path and he finished well to give Cottesmore the lead at the break.
They then needed a second goal after the restart to cement their hold on the game and top scorer Mark Tinsley saw a goalbound effort blocked.
Tinsley then headed a cross wide with Stannard waiting to pounce behind his strike partner before Milne broke free only to be thwarted by a fine save from the home goalkeeper.
Milne put another half chance wide from a corner before ProChance began to build some pressure as Cottesmore started to tire.
Jagroop then found some space to break clear to net the equaliser to earn a share of the spoils after scoring in a one-on-one with goalkeeper Nathan Clare who had made some good saves throughout the game as a replacement for the unavailable Alex Brown.
Giblin added: "A point was a fair result because of the amount of effort and work-rate that the boys had put in.
"It was definitely a point gained because you can't say that ProChance didn't deserve their equaliser. They played some really nice football and it would have been harsh on them if we had taken all three.
"We still have the ability to finish third in our own hands so we need to perform in our last three games because it would be bitterly disappointing if we didn't finish in that third or fourth position."
Cottesmore: Clare, Roberts, McJannet, Denigan, Ridout, Fortnam, McDonald, Milne, Stannard, Tinsley, Topaloglu. Subs used: Papworth, Luke Smith. Not used: Baines, Giblin.