GRIMSBY Town travelled to Gateshead this evening looking for their first win of the new season, with the managers having made two changes to the team that drew with Aldershot at the weekend.
Chris Doig came in for Clayton McDonald, and Lenell John-Lewis replaced Scott Nielson, who had no place in the squad.
The Mariners opted for the usual 4-3-3 formation, with a back four of Thomas, Pearson, Doig and Bignot. Forming the midfield were Kerr, Disley and McLaughlin, while Colbeck, John-Lewis and Hearn were part of another three pronged attack.
Substitutes for Town were Andy Cook, Clayton McDonald Andi Thanoj, Dayle Southwell and Alex Rodman.
Former Mariner Richard Brodie made the starting XI for the home side.
Gateshead looked the most threatening at the start of the game and nearly found an opening after 4 minutes, but no-one was there to connect with a dangerous cross by Adam Boyes.
The Mariners won a corner on seven minutes when Lennell John-Lewis had a shot blocked, however the home side's defence were solid and dealt with any danger immediately.
A low driven cross whipped in by Colbeck on 13 minutes nearly found Liam Hearn, but again Gateshead managed to clear the danger.
Town had another corner on 14 minutes but the ball was cleared off the line as Shaun Pearson headed goal-wards, while at the other end, Josh Walker missed a good chance for the home side when he fired straight at McKeown.
Gateshead won a corner on 20 minutes, and that was when they found their breakthrough, the initial danger cleared by the Mariners but not well enough, and PHIL TURNBULL was there to fire an incredible shot into the top corner from 30 yards.
Immediately after, Jamie Chandler's trickery meant he got the better of the Town defence. And whipped the ball in. it was cleared and another corner followed from which James Brown headed wide.
The Mariners applied some heavy pressure of their own, and on 26 minutes, their hard work paid off. Colbeck delivered a superb cross and found HEARN who was gifted with a free header to level the scores.
Town came into the game a lot more after the goal,and had an excellent chance on the half hour. The ball sprang loose after Lenell John-Lewis won it in the air, it fell to Colbeck who rifled it goalward only for the keeper to make an excellent save.
Colbeck then whipped another brilliant ball into the six yard area, both Hearn and John-Lewis sliding in to make contact, but both missing.
Town were temporarily down to ten men when Lenell John-Lewis took a ball to the face 11 minutes before the break, and was forced to leave the field requiring further treatment.
Gateshead seemed to regain the edge following the stoppage, and after some good passing and heavy pressure Josh Walker fired over.
Richard Brodie made a late charge down the right hand side a minute before half time but he was cut off by a sturdy Mariners defence.
After a 20 minute delay due to floodlight failure, the game restarted and John Lewis returned to the field.
Within a minute of the restart Town found their way through the defence, Scott Kerr teeing up Paddy McLaughlin, but his effort was blazed over.
Bignot then whipped in a dangerous cross but his touch was too heavy and Hearn was unable to connect.
Joe Colbeck then forced an excellent save from Adam Bartlett, after a mistake from Luke O'Brien let him through on goal.
Quick thinking by Jamie Chandler set up goalscorer Turnbull to shoot from 30 yards, but his effort was well over.
The Mariners wasted a great chance when Bignot played a clever ball through to John-Lewis, who fired wide from 18 yards.
Hearn's trickery saw him break through the Gateshead back line, though his touch was too heavy and the ball went just over the head of John-Lewis.
Colin Larkin replaced Adam Boyes for Gateshead, who had struggled to break their way into the game in the second half.
That failed to make much of an impact though as the lively Colbeck whipped in another dangerous ball but the danger was cleared.
Carl Magnay earned himself a booking for the home side with 20 minutes to go when he upended Aswad Thomas 25 yards from goal, but the resultant free kick ended up in a scramble that saw the visitors concede a foul themselves.
After a good spell of pressure from the Mariners, they found their break through and went ahead for the first time on 72 minutes. A short corner from McLaughlin was played back to him by Kerr. Mclaughlin whipped in and found CHRIS DOIG at the back post, and he powered a headed past Bartlett to give the visitors the lead.
Town won another corner on 75 minutes when Disley and Hearn linked well to force the defensive error. The effort went wide as John-Lewis stole from the head of Shaun Pearson.
Gateshead made another change to try and liven things up as Marcus Maddison replaced Jamie Chandler.
Gateshead won a corner with ten minutes to go, the ball whipped in by Walker. It fell to Tate but his shot was well off the mark as he blazed it over from just inside the box.
The home side never really came into the game in the second half, Grimsby dominant in possession and in creating chances.
A half chance came two minutes from time when an ambitious shot was taken from thirty yards but it went well over.
Another whistled just past the post as Turnbull hammered goalward from 25 yards.
The Mariners looked comfortable in the closing stages and were aiming to run down the clock with everything they did. Southwell replaced Hearn for the visitors for the final 30 seconds of normal time.
Maddison had a last ditch shot at goal from the left had side. It was curling away from McKeown who did well to hold on to it.
Gateshead were unable to break down the Mariners, whose resilient second half performance earned them three valuable points to get their season off and running.
Scott and Hurst's men must now turn their attentions to their next game in the league, away to Welling United on Saturday.