Despite producing a below-par performance, the young Nailers showed fierce determination to snatch a last minute equaliser to earn a 3-3 draw against a physical Mossley outfit.
In a match characterised by bemusing decisions from the match officials, the advantage swung wildly as both teams gained the upper hand only to pass up the chance of victory.
The first contentious decision came when Mossley ‘keeper Hasan Satter dropped the ball after colliding with his own defender. Dan Watson knocked the ball into the net only for the ‘goal’ to be ruled out when the referee adjudged it a foul on Satter.
The let-off sparked Mossley into a period of domination and they were unfortunate when a curling free-kick drifted just wide of the far post.
A reasonable shout for a Mossley penalty then went ignored and Belper were again fortunate moments later when a shot from the edge of the area struck the crossbar with home ‘keeper, Jack Repton well beaten.
But Belper got their noses in front when skipper, Sam Weston got his head to a floated free kick from Oil Rathband and sent the ball arcing into the net.
But Mossley got themselves back on level terms just before the interval when Prince Owusu took full advantage as Scott Taylor conceded possession in the middle of the park and ran through the Nailers defence, rounded the ‘keeper and slotted the ball into the empty net.
Mossley came out for the second half in determined mood and were denied when a linesman’s flag cut short their celebrations after they turned the ball at the far post.
But then Belper were mystified when Josh Bullock planted the ball into the roof of the net after a goalmouth scramble only for their joy to be diminished by a puzzling offside decision.
The game was now swinging from end to end and Mossley edged ahead when the powerful Antonio Din Chin outmuscled his way through the Belper defence before planting the ball into the net.
Minutes later, the Nailers were back on terms when Josh Bullock was brought down inside the box and the same player dusted himself down and stepped up to fire a perfect penalty kick just inside the post.
In a rousing finale, Din Chin looked to have scored the winner for Mossley with another cultured finish only for Dan Watson’s overhead kick salvaging a point for the Nailers as time ebbed away.
Both sides will probably believe that they had justifiable claims on all three points but, in reality, a share of the spoils was just about the right result in a game when defensive frailties would have frightened the life out of the respective coaches.
Belper Town: Repton, Gandola, Patrick, Rathband, Hall, Weston, Taylor, Craddock, Camm, Watson, Bullock. Subs: Cain, Rodgers, Higton, Dronfield, Walker, Bradbury, Mighty.
Mossley: Sattar, Barrow, Ali, Norris, Prole, Adelaje, Yeoman, Lewis, Din Chin, Owusu, Elbarnossi. Subs: Dias, De Sar, Muavia, Hunstan.
Referee: David Barlow (Replaced by Chris Houghton after 46 mins)
Pic cap: Sam Weston (5) heads Belper into a first half lead in the 3-3 draw against Mossley.