COLWYN Bay marked their first Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Division One West game since resigning from the English system with a 2-2 draw at Leek Town.

The visitors started on the front foot and wasted a good chance after just two minutes when Astley Mullholland’s header from an Ash Woods cross failed to find the net, and Town went straight up the other end with a blistering counter-attack that was finished off by Rob Stevenson with three on the clock.

A superb block from Jordan Carrington prevented Niall Maguire from doubling the home side’s advantage on six minutes, with an audacious 40-yard strike from Bay midfielder Lass Mendes dropped the wrong side of the post soon after.

Bay stopper Andy Coughlin then produced a pair of fine saves to deny Dan Trickett-Smith and Tim Grice midway through the half, with Welsh futsal international Craig Pritchard firing narrowly wide on 22 minutes after more good work from Mendes.

Coughlin had to be at his brilliant best to thwart Stevenson just before the half hour mark, and this proved to be crucial as the Seagulls got back on level terms when Mullholland delivered a trademark finish into the bottom corner with 34 gone.

Things almost got even better for the Bay on 38 minutes when Ethan Devine’s powerful effort came back off the post in what turned out the be the final chance of note in the first half.

After the break saw Coughlin called into action straight away when he saved at the feet of Grice on 47 minutes, with James Ellison flashing a shot wide with 55 gone following a fine individual run.

Ellison and Will Bell produced fine tackles to deny clear goal-scoring opportunities midway through the half, with Woods having a shot blocked from close range on 77 minutes after a goal-mouth scramble from a Danny Andrews corner.

Grice caused more problems with his aerial presence on 72 minutes, but his tame header was comfortably saved by Coughlin, and the keeper was at full stretch to deny Stevenson’s goal-bound effort with 78 gone.

A sensational headed clearance from Ellison denied Town a certain goal on 82 minutes, but moments later Grice popped up to steer past Coughlin to give the hosts the lead for a second time.

There was still time for further drama, which came three minutes from time thanks to a superb 30-yard strike from Andrews that rescued a share of the spoils for Craig Hogg’s men.