Boreham Wood 1 Luton Town 1
Striker Craig Mackail-Smith’s unerring finish was the highlight of Luton’s 1-1 draw at National League side Boreham Wood this evening.
The former Peterborough and Brighton forward, currently on trial at Kenilworth Road, was sent clean through midway through the second half and showed all the class that has netted him over 150 career goals, putting the home keeper on his behind and rifling into the top corner.
Hatters, with manager John Still watching on from the stands, picked a strong side for the game, with fans getting their first chance to see the likes of Paddy McCourt, Danny Green, Josh McQuoid and another trialist in Sunday’s two goal hero Mustafa Tiryaki.
With McCourt pulling the strings drawing early satisfied musings from the visiting contingent, it was Wood who should have opened the scoring as Mark O’Brien was caught out but Elliot Justham saved impressively from both Matthew Whichelow and Harry Crawford.
McQuoid then sent a deflected volley narrowly over and from the corner Cameron McGeehan’s free header bounced wide.
One of Still’s former charges Graeme Montgomery saw an angled drive go wide, while Ricky Shakes put another chance straight at Justham, with Montgomery then off target as well.
Hatters then changed nine players after the break, including Mackail-Smith starting alongside Tiryaki upfront, with Alex Lawless, Luke Guttridge and Luke Wilkinson involved too.
It was Wood who struck first though when Stephen O’Donnell tried to intercept a through ball, only to divert into the path of Junior Morias, who tucked his shot beyond Justham.
Hatters almost had an instant response, Mackail-Smith linking well with Tiryaki who dragged his effort wide of the post.
Morais almost had a second, hammering a marvellous into the stanchion behind the goal, while Mackail-Smith couldn’t wriggle clear to fire off his shot.
On the hour mark, Hatters defender Scott Griffiths set off to bulldoze his way through, with the home keeper eventually parrying wide.
Tiryaki then had a sighter saved from O’Donnell’s cross, with the full back’s willingness to burst forward catching the eye, while Isaac Galliford’s blockbuster drew a wonderful block from Devante McKain.
In the latter stages, Hatters were level as Mackail-Smith was played through and powered into the roof of the net.
Both sides could have won it late on, but defences held firm and Hatters now head to Hitchin on Thursday evening.
Hatters first half: Elliot Justham, Luke Trotman, Dan Potts, Steve McNulty, Mark O’Brien, Danny Green, Cameron McGeehan, Nathan Doyle, Paddy McCourt, Josh McQuoid, Mustafa Tiryaki.
Hatters second half: Elliot Justham, Stephen O’Donnell, Scott Griffiths, Luke Wilkinson, Curtley Williams, Alex Lawless, Jonathan Smith, Luke Guttridge, Isaac Galliford, Mustafa Tiryaki (Zane Banton 70), Craig Mackail-Smith.