Mansfield Town and Stevenage played out a goalless draw to each take a solitary point from Sky Bet League Two action at One Call Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Throughout a battling matchup in Nottinghamshire, neither side were able to break the deadlock that lasted the entire duration.
Elliott List struck the woodwork for Boro while both Harry Charsley and George Maris replicated his efforts in either half with only the frame of the goal separating one point from three.
Graham Coughlan named two changes from his side’s trip to Newport as Charsley replaced Ollie Clarke who was suffering with a calf problem, while Marek Stech had recovered from illness to be restored to the starting line-up.
And it was the Stags’ No. 1 who was immediately called into action after Jack Aitchison struck goalwards with his right boot.
Neither side had managed to fully settle into the contest – battling for possession on a wet One Call surface – until proceedings quickly burst into life.
Following an unsuccessful corner, Maris recycled the ball with a hooked delivery towards Farrend Rawson and his subsequent flick-on saw Charsley clatter the upright with a first-time volley.
Mansfield had come agonisingly close but almost let their guard down where the visitors sought to capitalise. Inih Effiong harried Stech into misjudging a backpass from Corey O’Keeffe but the Czech ‘keeper recovered in time to force a goal kick.
Minutes later, though, Stech made amends when he showcased excellent reflexes to parry Effiong’s fierce, close-range strike to safety.
The Stags attempted to play their way through a busy Stevenage backline and as Jamie Reid nor Nicky Maynard were unable to feed an intricate pass, Charsley claimed possession and drilled over from 18 yards.
A battle-hardened first period concluded without a mark on the scoresheet and the second followed in similar fashion.
The visitors were awarded an early corner that fell kindly to Aitchison but the midfielder miscued his attempt.
Similarly, O’Keeffe made a bending run inside his marker to meet Maris’ exquisite curler yet the No. 2 was thwarted first by a Jamie Cumming save then the offside flag.
Coughlan’s side were growing in stature and implementing urgency into their fifth Sky Bet League Two fixture. Maynard spun a touch-tight Scott Cuthbert before forcing another save out of Cumming before O’Keeffe fired a free-kick wide of the Stevenage target.
James Perch, who had been shielding the back three all afternoon, traversed forward and almost broke the deadlock with a rasping strike from distance.
However, the amber and blue still needed to be partially cautious and heeded a big warning on 74 minutes. Alex Revell’s men – specifically Luther James-Wildin – made inroads as he delivered a cross towards List who smacked the crossbar on the stretch.
There proved to be one final, dramatic moment for the Stags when Maris let fly on a bouncing ball but it collided with the underside of the bar and, heartbreakingly for the hosts, back into play.
Mansfield now face a seven-day period without competitive action before they welcome Bradford City to NG18 next Saturday.
STAGS XI: Stech (GK), O’Keeffe, Menayese, Sweeney ©, Rawson, Charsley, Maris, Perch, Reid, McLaughlin (Benning 50’), Maynard (Cook 74’).
UNUSED SUBS: Stone (GK), Bowery, Gordon, O’Driscoll, Smith.
STEVENAGE XI: Cumming (GK), James-Wildin, Cuthbert ©, Prosser, Effiong, Hutton, List (Newton 81’), Read, Smith (Vincelot 84’), Marshall, Aitchison.
UNUSED SUBS: Johnson (GK), Coker, Vincelot, Marsh, Vancooten, Akinwande.
REFEREE: Sebastian Stockbridge
ASSISTANTS: Andrew Aylott & Graeme Fyvie
FOURTH OFFICIAL: Marvyn Amphlett