Harriers kept their first clean sheet of the season on Saturday but couldn’t find a way past an in-form Grimsby side as spirited contest ended 0-0 at Aggborough Stadium.
The opening stages were open and bright from both sides without any real incision, Chey Dunkley’s header after just four minutes the best of the early openings as he planted one wide from a free-kick taken from deep.
With 17 minutes gone the visitors etched out a decent chance as they worked the ball out well before firing an excellent ball into the box and on to the head of Frankie Artus who got fine contact to it, sending it just over the bar.
Four minutes later they might think they should have done much better with a fine team move; the quality again very good into the danger area as Nathan Pond got up to support the attack and send a diving header narrowly off target.
Half an hour in, only a killer final touch stopped Harriers getting ahead as good work saw Lee Vaughan charge on to the ball and lift a great ball into the six yard box where Danny Pilkington only narrowly missed making contact with a flick header.
Two minutes later Vaughan himself drove one wide and with a bit of momentum behind them the hosts charged forward again through Keith Briggs who let fly with one from 20 yards, goalkeeper James McKeown forced into a good save.
Briggs was instrumental in that surge and with six to go until the break he went even closer, supplying Vaughan before making a bursting run towards the far post to meet the defender’s cross with a header that dropped agonisingly wide.
Just after the interval it was a mystery as to how the Mariners didn’t make the breakthrough – three wonderful opportunities within second as Aswad Thomas surged into the area and drove in a cross that was pushed away by Vaughan, the ball recycled to Joe Colebeck who smashed it against the underside of the ball; bodies scrambling everywhere as Andy Cook then tried his luck, flashing wide.
Just after, Mickey Demetriou and James Vincent saw half chances come and go as the tempo was given a real boost; visiting substitute Greg Pearson giving the hosts a scare on 66 minutes as he took a ball down and lashed it into the side netting on the angle.
With both sets of fans finding their voices and both management teams making good use of substitutions you sensed that going into the final 15 minutes it would be a case of first goal wins – the only frustration being that n either side could find it, Grimsby coming the closest as Colbeck smashed the bar once again in injury time.