HEREFORD interim manager Josh Gowling said his side 'gave a great account of themselves' despite being pulled back to a 2-2 draw with Darlington.

The Bulls looked on their way to a first win in over a month when Jared Hodgkiss fired them ahead with five minutes remaining.

However, after dropping off the visitors salvaged a point with two minutes left on the clock.

"I spoke to the lads afterwards because I was a bit concerned because we dropped deep straight away (after going 2-1 ahead," said Gowling.

"I just think sometimes when confidence is low you naturally try and hang on to what you've got.

"We sat off a bit deep and that causes the issue and obviously they got the equaliser.

"It is what it is, we are down there as we haven't been getting results.

"You just want to keep hold of it, credit to the lads they just wanted to sure it up, but unfortunately we didn't get it.

"Overall we showed a great account of ourselves. The crowd were amazing and that noise when we scored the second, it's not been like that for a while here and it was really nice to hear.

"It's a real positive step. Their goalkeeper has pulled off two unbelievable saves for the game.

"It was a very entertaining game for the fans and I was disappointed with the result in the end because I thought we were the best team.

"The team spirit is excellent, we're building together and it shows out there on the pitch."

During a bright start the Bulls and Gowling felt they deserved a 19th minute penalty.

Louis Lang looked to have handled the ball after slipping inside the box and stopping Rowan Liburd a run at goal.

However, referee Thomas Kirk waved away the appeals.

"He has gone around him he's put his arm down and the ball has hit his arm," added Gowling.

"The referee is in a great position and for me it's handball. We don't get it and I'm not going to complain about it."

At the opposite end Jarrett Rivers saw his effort saved well by Brandon Hall.

After scoring twice in their previous match Kelsey Mooney was full of confidence and ran at the defence before seeing his effort saved.

Hereford's efforts were almost rewarded on the 32nd minute but Owen-Evans' clipped free-kick rattled the bar.

However, the visitors went ahead four minutes later catching the Bulls on the break, Justin Donawa found Jarrett Rivers at the back post to slide home.

In the Bulls goal Hall made another fine save to deny marksman Adam Campbell after beating the defence.

Playing with the blustery conditions Hereford came back into the tie after the break and deserved their 57th minute equaliser with a first goal for Lenell John-Lewis firing over the goalkeeper from a tight angle.

The Bulls were in resurgent form looking for a second and Kelsey Mooney was only denied from close range by a fine Chris Elliott save.

Five minutes from time Hereford went ahead when Jason Pope's cross was cleared into the path of Hodgkiss who rifled the ball home.

The Bulls were ahead for just three minutes when they fell asleep and Omar Holness netted from inside the box.

Jacob Jagger Cane thought he had won it for the Bulls but was denied by a close range Elliott save deep into injury time.

Gowling thought that Darlington's late equaliser could have been chalked off for an off-side player who interfered with play.

He said: "(Reece) Styche got one ruled off earlier in the season and I've looked at the video and Jevan (Anderson) has had to run around him to get to the ball so technically he's interfered with play so he is off-side.

"I understand the officials have got hard decisions to make, but I think that's off-side."

Hereford: Hall, Hodgkiss, Pope, Jagger-Cane, Anderson, Riley, Mooney, Owen-Evans, John-Lewis, Liburd (Ash 75), O'Sullivan (Thomas 81)

Unused subs: Davies, Raison, Whitlock