Morecambe 1 Plymouth Argyle 1: Shrimps snap their losing run with a well earned point
Morecambe ended a run of four consecutive defeats as a fine display saw them share the spoils with Plymouth Argyle.
Both goals came in the opening dozen minutes at the Mazuma Stadium with Jonah Ayunga firing the Shrimps into a sixth minute lead and Danny Mayor equalising six minutes later.
Each side enjoyed a period of dominance with Argyle having the better first-half chances and Morecambe looking likelier to score after the break.
Shrimps’ boss Stephen Robinson made three changes from the side beaten at Cheltenham Town in midweek.
In came Callum Jones, Ryan Cooney and Arthur Gnahoua with Liam Gibson dropped to the bench, Scott Wootton out through illness and Shane McLoughlin missing courtesy of a knock picked up on Friday.
However, Shayon Harrison was back on the bench for the first time since August’s home loss to Rotherham United, having recovered from a broken toe.
Morecambe began brightly, Ayunga skipping away from Brendan Galloway before cutting the ball back for Cole Stockton whose shot was blocked by Dan Scarr.
There was no let-off for Argyle moments later when the Shrimps opened the scoring.
Having won back possession deep in the visitors’ half, the Shrimps saw Gnahoua, Stockton and Ryan Cooney all crowded out before the ball was worked across to Ayunga and he provided a clinical first-time finish.
Ayunga saw another effort held by Plymouth keeper Michael Cooper before the visitors worked their way back into the game, inspired by Mayor.
He brought them level on 12 minutes, netting from close range after he cut the ball back for Ryan Hardie, whose shot had been blocked on the line.
Two minutes later, Mayor ran in behind Adam Phillips and laid the ball across for Luke Jephcott, whose effort was cleared off the line by Greg Leigh.
Another Mayor run saw him play in Conor Grant, whose ball across goal was fired narrowly over by Jephcott.
Grant continued to give Morecambe problems with one cross volleyed into the ground and across goal by Joe Edwards, before seeing a shot blocked by Anthony O’Connor.
Moments before half-time, referee Marc Edwards - who incurred Morecambe fans’ wrath when sending off Shane McLoughlin against Accrington Stanley a month earlier - was at the centre of another contentious decision.
Phillips looked to have been barged in the back by Scarr inside the area, only for the referee to deem the Morecambe midfielder had committed the original offence.
Grant again threatened early in the second half, volleying well wide from Panutche Camara’s cross, but it was Morecambe who had the better start to the half.
The impressive Ayunga again got the better of Galloway but his cross was half-volleyed narrowly over by Stockton, who fired wide moments later.
Cooney shot over from distance and Diagouraga overhit a pass to Ayunga when he would have been through on goal.
Moments after escaping with a mere talking-to for a badly mistimed challenge on Cooney, Grant’s spectacular volley found the travelling fans rather than the top corner.
Stockton curled a shot from distance straight at Cooper in the first of four added minutes, while a goalmouth scramble from a Plymouth corner came to nothing as both sides claimed a point apiece.
Morecambe: Andresson, Cooney, O’Connor, Delaney, Leigh, Phillips (Price 90), Diagouraga, Jones, Ayunga (McDonald 81), Stockton, Gnahoua. Subs not used: Letheren, McLaughlin, Mensah, Gibson, Harrison.
Plymouth Argyle: Cooper, Wilson, Scarr, Galloway, Houghton, Edwards, Camara (Broom 63), Mayor, Grant, Jephcott (Agard 72), Hardie (Garrick 73). Subs not used: Burton, Gillesphey, Randell, Law.
Referee: Marc Edwards.
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