Both teams were quick to test the opposition’s defence, an early free kick for the home side was headed clear from underneath the crossbar, the Imps responded, Adebayo-Smith getting in behind but a last ditch tackle denied him getting his shot away on goal.
On the 15 minute mark the Stags got the opening goal of the game, the referee pointing to the penalty spot following a trip in the area, Sarson sending the Imps keeper the wrong way. The Imps then began to mount some pressure of their own, Wonham going close from distance before Watkins, six yards out was denied by a splendid reaction save to keep the Stags in front.
The referee drew the first half to a close, with the visitors perhaps finishing the half the stronger of the two teams. Flitton suffering from concussion as the game started to become a physical encounter, was replaced by Smith.
HT: Stags 1 - 0 Imps
Lincoln continued where they left off, Wonham and Adebayo-Smith going close to finding the equaliser, Hart's corners were causing problems for the Stags and eventually the pressure told and Idehen who got above everyone in the penalty area guided his header in to the bottom corner, that levelled the score and on the balance of play, it was a deserved equaliser.
Substitute Smith went on a fantastic 40 yard run which resulted in him being brought down, up stepped Sartorius who calmly placed the penalty into the top corner to put the Imps in front.
Adebayo-Smith was causing the Stags defence problems and nearly increased the lead further but his sweetly struck shot went inches wide of the upright and a number of counter attacks by the Imps were wasted, the final pass or shot letting them down.
After a wave of attacks by the home side,
they finally got the equaliser, Sinclair was picked out at the far post, he had time to take a touch before sliding the ball into the far corner of the net for the equaliser. The Stags went close to going ahead but the slightest of deflections was enough to see it fly just over the top of the crossbar.
In the 90th minute the Imps thought they had got the winner, Wonham with a fantastic ball to Smith following a long clearance and he was the first to react and slid in to guide the ball into the net but there was to be a sting in the tail Sinclair again for the Stags latched onto a loose ball in the penalty area, despite appeals for handball he drilled a right-footed shot through the bodies and into the corner of the net to level it up.
This was to be the last of the action as the referee called full time meaning both teams shared the spoils, taking home a point each in what was a thrilling end to the match.
FT: Stags 3 - 3 Imps
Imps: White, Bucci, Hart, Idehen, Flitton, Watkins, Akinola, Wonham, Sartorius, Liversidge, Adebayo-Smith
Substitutes: Cox, Tear, Gee, Smith, Cann
Report Tobias Liversidge
Updated 10:38 - 4 Sep 2018 by Derek Priestley