STRIKER Tony Agana's first goal for Hereford in the 59th minute salvaged what could be a priceless point in their penultimate Nationwide League Third Division match of the season at Edgar Street.

Hartlepool's 2-1 win with a last-minute goal at Darlington plunged The Bulls back into 23rd position, although they remain three points clear of bottom team Brighton. But, after Agana, who replaced midfielder Mark Turner at the start of the second period, equalised Steve Winter's 45th- minute goal, Hereford could not produce the drive or skill to make another decisive breakthrough.

Torquay, although with only one win in their last 16 league, were in the happy position of knowing a point would be enough to make sure they retained Nationwide League status. So they packed their defence, making only occasional breakaway raids in the second period. A win would have gone a long way to easing Hereford's relegation battle and director of football Graham Turner, who has managed at top level, commented: ''The pressure of managing a Premiership club pales into insignificance compared to fighting for survival in the Third Division.

''Unfortunately we didn't take the chances that came our way in the first half and in the second period I sent on Tony Agana to go at them with three strikers.'' Turner also had to make an enforced change at the break as Dean Smith's groin injury flared up again and he was replaced in the centre of defence by John Brough.

The Bulls made an energetic start but chances to bag an early goal went begging. Mark Turner headed Murray Fishlock's cross wide from close range. Then Adrian Foster had a great opportunity when faced with a one-to-one situation on Ray Newland but he could not get the ball past the goalkeeper. In the 32minute Foster took advantage of a mix- up between Lee Barrow and Alex Watson to surge into the penalty area and fire just wide of the far post.

Hereford's defence, well marshalled by David Norton, had hardly looked under threat until Torquay forced three successive corners just before the interval. The Bulls' fallibility at set pieces again cost them dearly as, from the third, the unchallenged Winter headed the visitors into the lead. Agana's introduction soon paid dividends, however, as the Gulls failed to clear Murray Fishlock's 59th-minute flag-kick. Brian McGorry drove the ball into the goalmouth and in the ensuing scramble Agana's low shot went under the diving Newland to make it 1-1.

After that neither side looked likely to grab another goal but Hereford had an anxious moment in the dying minutes. The Gulls's Rodney Jack appealed for a penalty after being grounded in a tussle with Trevor Matthewson but Preston referee Phil Richards waved play on.

Hereford: Wood, Norton, Smith (Brough 45 min), Matthewson, Sandeman, Hargreaves, McGorry, Turner (Agana 45 min), Fishlock, A. Foster, Williams. Subs not used: Warner.

Attendance: 2,852.