Jack Muldoon's header from close range in the 85th minute ensured Town came away with a point from their home clash against Crawley Town.The equaliser was no less than deserved following a spirited second half display after falling behind to Max Watters first-half strike.
With Simon Weaver absent as a result of taking precautionary self-isolation, assistant Paul Thirlwell took charge of the game.
Town did have Ryan Fallowfield back in the starting line-up though, with Jake Lawlor, Tom Walker and Brendan Kiernan also handed starts.
Crawley boss John Yems was also forced to make changes with Sam Matthews out with a concussion and Tom MacGill and Reece Grego-Cox again unavailable. After impressing in midweek Tarryn Allarakhia was given a start in midfield.
In the build up to the game Weaver spoke of the goal threat that Crawley possessed and Town received early notice of this when Watters broke free to force James Belshaw into a smart save.
Town responded well though with skipper Josh Falkingham striking a drive narrowly wide before some neat play down the right resulted in Jack Muldoon just failing to get his shot away.
Crawley would take the lead though after 27 minutes when Watters pounced on a hesitant Town defence to fire past Belshaw for his eighth goal of the season.
The visitors almost doubled their lead in the minutes before the break when firstly Fallowfield produced a timely block to deny Watters and then Tom Nichols headed wide from close range.
Thirlwell opted to change things up at half-time by introducing Aaron Martin place of Tom Walker, switching to a 4-3-3 formation. But it was Belshaw who was the busier of the two keepers after the break when he produced a smart double save to deny the impressive Watters.
Town slowly imposed themselves on the game though the majority of play now in their opponent's half. Lloyd Kerry almost wrong-footed Stuart Nelson from distance, with Lawlor then seeing his header from the resulting corner cleared off the line.
Fellow centre-half Connor Hall then headed straight at Nelson as Town pressed hard for an equaliser.
Thirlwell made a final double change by bringing on Dan Jones and Connor Kirby for Warren Burrell and Kerry with 15 minutes remaining.
With Crawley now on the back-foot Town finally got their reward though when top scorer Jack Muldoon bundled home from close range from Martin's flick on following Jones's long throw.
Town pushed hard for a late winner and almost snatched it in the final minute when Jones's deep cross almost caught out Nelson, who was fortunate to see the ball come back off the cross bar and both sides had to settle for a point apiece.
Town: Belshaw, Fallowfield, Burrell (Jones, 76), Lawlor, Hall, Thomson, Falkingham, Kerry (Kirby, 76), Walker (Martin, 45), Kiernan, Muldoon.
Subs not used: Cracknell, Stead, Beck.
Goals: Muldoon (85)
Booked: Kerry (54)
Crawley: Nelson, Doherty, McNerny, Powell, Nadesan, Allarakhia (Dallison, 78), Davies, Nichols, Craig, Watters (Frost, 59), Hessenthaler.
Subs not used: Morris, Adebowale, Sesay, Ashford, Galach.
Goals: Watters (28)
Booked: Dallison (83)
Referee: Martin Coy
Report by Danny Pugsley