Manager Gary Johnson described Torquay United's 2-1 win at Altrincham as 'a huge three points', but hinted that it came after some straight talking with the score at 1-1 at half-time.
Goals at the start of each half by Connor Lemonheigh-Evans and Sunderland loanee Stephen Wearne sandwiched a 30th minute 25-yard equaliser by Toby Mullarkey, who had also scored when Alty won 3-1 at Plainmoor on the first day of the season.
The result was made even sweeter because United were without Covid virus victims Joe Lewis and Dean Moxey in defence, as well as midfielder Tom Lapslie, whose hoped-for comeback had to be put on hold on the morning of the game.
New loan signing Stephen Duke-McKenna from Queen's Park Rangers, who only joined the squad two days before the game, started in midfield.
"It's a huge three points," said Johnson.
"We started off very well. We know that Altrincham have got players who can win games for them, but we wanted to press them and we scored a terrific goal.
"It was something that we hoped would happen for us, but we didn't quite keep it going.
"We weren't close enough as a unit, and at half-time we said 'Lads - if you wouldn't mind, please pick up your men a bit closer and we'll start nicking the ball better than we did in the first half."
The result was United's fifth win in seven games, they are now seven points off the NL Play-Offs, but the next few days will be full of tense 'testing' as they try to get their latest absentees back for next Tuesday's night's home game against Solihull Moors.
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