Neil Woods’s Grimsby Town youth team moved up to first-place in Youth Alliance Cup group D as they beat Walsall 2-1 at Cheapside.
The young Mariners went into the game knowing that only a win would give them a chance of progressing to the quarter-finals of the competition.
Town started brightly in a competitive game, with Lennon Stead going close in the early stages but his shot fired just wide.
But it was Walsall who opened the scoring as they pressed Town and stole the ball high up the pitch, before a neat pull-back was slotted home by the Saddlers’ striker.
But Town responded well, and showed their competitive edge without creating a huge amount of chances.
Town almost found themselves level early into the second half as Brandon McPherson flicked the ball on for Stead, but the Walsall goalkeeper denied the forward with a great save.
And Stead had another chance just moments later when his powerful volley rattled the under-side of the bar.
The young Mariners got the equaliser on 67 minutes as midfielder Evan Khouri smashed home, following good play from Stead and Cameron Painter.
Town then piled on the pressure as they searched for the winner, but defenders Josh Smaller and Duncan Idehen also made a few last-ditch tackles to keep Walsall out at the other end.
And Town won the game with the last kick of the match as Stead latched onto a ball in the channel before beating his man and picking out Ayodeji Owoeye who slotted home to make it 2-1.
The young Mariners return to EFL North East Youth Alliance action as they welcome Chesterfield to Cheapside on Saturday (11am).