RETFORD United produced a remarkable comeback to claim a late 3-2 victory over Pickering Town, making it five unbeaten against the Pikes.
Earlier in the season, an Andy Walkden goal was enough to give Retford the points at the Jones and Co Stadium, this time, United were made to work for the win after going 2-0 down in the second half.
Richard Sennett was without several players, Adam Scott was out after an injury sustained in the previous game against Heanor Town and the Under 19 trio of Brett Lucas, Reece Thompson and Bobby Johnson were all unable to travel due to injury.
Simon Ward, Karl Slack and Jack Cross came into the side and there was a place on the bench for Craig Fisher, his first inclusion since signing in the summer.
From the early exchanges, Retford were frustrated twice by the flag of the assistant referee, Cross and Slack both penalised for offside.
Slack made a run on the right, but his cross was straight at the keeper as Retford kept up the early pressure on their hosts.
Richard Medcalf was tripped on the edge of the box, Ward stepped up to send the free-kick over the wall, the ball taking a deflection for a corner.
Liam Shepherd was given space to run at the United defence, but Rob Sanderson did well to keep his composure and clear for the Badgers.
Slack did well to stay on his feet under the challenge of the keeper on the edge of the box before sending in a cross into the centre, Hadley doing well to rise and connect with a shot but it was too high for him to make a clean effort and the ball was rising over the target and into the stand.
Slack eventually did get the better of the offside trap and he managed to get in a low cross that was headed away for a corner by the diving Dean Readman.
Pickering set off on a run on the counter attack with United struggling to clear, Joe Danby doing well to keep possession only to fire over Ayden Duffy’s bar.
The Pickering defence were looking shaky and the half-time whistle would have been a relief to give them a chance to regroup at the break, but not until they were let off right on the stroke of half-time when Hadley broke through, finding Slack who fired inches wide from a good position.
The second half was only two minutes old when Pickering took the lead, a free-kick on the left was hit towards goal by Tom Reid, the ball taking a deflection off a United defender to wrong foot Duffy and hit the back of the net.
They were gifted a great opportunity to extend their lead minutes later when both Liam Salt and Liam Shepherd were through with only Duffy to beat, Sanderson did well to track back and get a touch on the ball as the shot looked likely, clearing the ball to Graeme Severn.
On 58 minutes, the afternoon got worse for Retford when Danby broke free to net for the home side, giving them a two goal cushion and making it hard work for Retford to get back into the game.
Slack did well again to draw Aaron Reid, the Pickering keeper, to the edge of his box, the ball finding Hadley who shot to win another corner.
A turning point in the game came when Slack was hit in the face during an aerial challenge, forcing the United striker off the pitch with a bloody nose and badly bruised eye, and a double substitution was made, with Slack and Ward making way for Nesbitt and Fisher.
On 77 minutes Medcalf did well to get into the box and fire his shot past Reid and reduce the arrears giving Retford some belief that they could at least grind out a point.
Danby was unlucky for Pickering when his shot bobbled in front of goal to go wide, but in a frenetic last 10 minutes, Retford found the important equaliser with four minutes remaining, Hadley on target to fire his shot under the keeper after meeting a great cross from Cross.
A minute into stoppage time, Retford scored a dramatic winner, Fisher at the far post stabbing the ball past Reid from a corner kick, doing well to hit his strike with several players in front of him, but the jubilation was superb as the travelling supporters who had made the long journey were rewarded for their continued support.
United travel to Barton Town on Wednesday for a re-arranged fixture before another away trip next Saturday to Parkgate in the League.