SUBSTITUTE Craig Mackail-Smith scored late to earn Luton the three points in a 2-1 victory over Hartlepool.
All three goals game in the second half, with Cameron McGeehan putting the Hatters in front before Adam Jackson equalised, however, Mackail-Smith’s strike wrapped up the game.
The win marks Nathan Jones’ first three points at home
Great build-up play on the right between McGeehan and Danny Green in the 11th minute, meant McGeehan found space to swing in a low dangerous cross, but it beat everyone was turned away for a corner.
Greens corner from the left-hand side found Scott Cuthbert the back post but Hartlepool keeper Trevor Carson did well to turn it away from goal.
Town continued to press the visitors and an another dangerous cross from Green couldn’t be met by Jack Marriot.
A quick cross along the face of the goal from Carl Magnay in the 18th minute was too fast for Billy Paynter to get on the end of.
The away side were pressing the hosts now and high ball into the box from Lewis Hawkins had to be headed away for a corner as Paynter was lurking in behind. The resulting corner was headed away by MGeehan.
The Hatters with a well worked free kick in the 28th minute which found Joe Pigott in the box but he couldn’t keep control of the ball and was put behind for a corner.
The corner delivered by Green bounced around in the box before it fell to Stephen O’Donnell who lashed wide.
A good move by Hartlepool in the 38th minute as Hawkins got a shot away but it was blocked by the Town defence before Brad Walker headed wide.
‘Pool should have been in front two minutes later as a low cross from the right was left by O’Donnell who didn’t see Nathan Thomas sliding in, he had most of the net to hit but somehow fired wide.
Nice play by the hosts on the brink of play which led to O’Donnell breaking through on goal, but he was pulled down on the edge of the box, although the free-kick was smashed into the wall by Alan Sheehan.
McGeehan had a great chance to put Luton ahead just three minutes into the second half as he got past a Hartlepool defender before getting his shot away with his left foot but it was agonisingly wide of the post.
Chance for Hartlepool after 57 minutes as Jake Gray is picked out down the right, he broke into the box and pulled the trigger but his shot was well blocked by Sheehan.
While at the other end, Pigott was fouled on the edge of the box, the free-kick was blocked by a hand in the Hartlepool wall which resulted in a penalty which McGeehan slotted home sending the keeper the wrong way.
Luton’s lead only lasted five minutes as the visitors were looking for a way back into the game, Matthew Bates’ shot from the edge of the box was turned wide of the post by Tyler.
Hartlepool equalised from the resulting corner as it was met by the head of Jackson who thumped the ball home.
Mackail-Smith put the hosts back in the lead with four minutes left as Olly Lee’s long pass found the forward in behind the away side’s defence and he beautifully lobbed Carson.
‘Pool had a good chance to equalise one minute into added time as Gray’s winding run found him space to have a left-footed shot but Tyler collected it easily.