Billy Kee struck twice as Accrington Stanley came from behind to beat Port Vale 2-1 at Vale Park.
Manager-less Vale made a strong start, striking the woodwork twice in the opening 20 minutes before David Worrall handed his side a deserved lead with a fine individual goal.
The goal seemed to snap Stanley into life and they levelled nine minutes before the break courtesy of Billy Kee’s half-volley.
The game was decided just after the hour when Kee wriggled free inside the area to tap home Sean McConville’s cross.
The early stages at Vale Park saw Stanley dominate possession but the Reds were almost stunned in the 11th minute, when the home side won a corner that saw Ben Whitfield unleash a volley that had Aaron Chapman beat before it thundered back off the bar.
Vale struck the woodwork again just eight minutes later, Tyrone Barnett climbed high at the back post before looping a header onto the bar to the relief of the Reds back four.
The pressure was telling and the home side didn’t have to wait much longer to take the lead, Worrall went on a mazy-run down the right, cut inside and curled a low shot around Chapman and into the bottom corner to score his first goal for the club.
Stanley continued to enjoy long spells of the ball inside the home sides half and they struck gold with their first meaningful effort on goal. Chapman’s long clearance picked out Kayden Jackson who had an effort blocked, the ball wound up at the feet of Kee to slam home his seventh goal of the season with a bit of help from the post.
The second-half started with a blow, as in-form Reds forward Jackson pulled up in the 52nd minute and had to be replaced by Leeds United loanee Mallik Wilks.
Like the first period it was Stanley who made the strong start but the home side who forced the first chance on goal, Tom Pope got on the end of Whitfield’s low-cross and directed it towards goal, but Chapman was strong at his near post to deny the big centre forward.
Just after the hour-mark Kee popped up inside the area to put Stanley ahead. Kelle Roos spilled a Janoi Donacien cross behind for a corner, it was darted around the area a couple of times before Mark Hughes found McConville who slid a ball right across the face of goal for Kee to make no mistake tapping into the empty net.
That prompted John Coleman to switch to a 5-3-2 to match up their opponents for the remainder of the game, as Scott Brown replaced Jordan Clark, it restricted the home side to half-chances which both fell inside the area to substitute Anthony De Freitas who couldn’t test Chapman.
As the game moved into three minutes of added time the valiant Stanley defence had to deal with two more corners, which they did, to secure all three points at Vale Park.
Attendace: 3,360 (88 away)