ALEX Bruton scored York City reserves’ consolation in a 2-1 home defeat to Hartlepool.

The teenage winger cancelled out Jake Orrell’s second-half opener for the visitors, but Connor Simpson went on to secure victory for the north-east outfit at Bootham Crescent.

For their penultimate Central League fixture, City included seven players with first-team experience in their starting line-up – Luke Simpson, Shaun Rooney, Danny Holmes, Sam Fielding, Scott Fenwick, Daniel Nti and Aidan Connolly – whilst an eighth in Bruton was named on the bench and new signing Derwin Martina wore the club’s colours for the first time.

The visitors also fielded six players in their first XI that have made senior outings for the Sky Bet League Two team this term.

Holmes blasted the first chance of the match over from 30 yards after a short free kick by Connolly.

Home keeper Simpson, meanwhile, was quick out of his goal to smother a Malachi Lavelle-Moore effort after the Pool trialist broke through the left channel.

An Orrell 15-yard attempt was then gathered by the City shot-stopper, before the Minstermen should have forged in front on 39 minutes but, after former New Zealand under-20 international net-minder Nik Tzanev had blundered on the edge of the box, Nti passed to an offside Ryan Edmondson instead of firing into the unguarded goal himself, with the subsequent effort inevitably disallowed.

But the visitors took the lead on 53 minutes when Orrell ghosted past a sleeping Rooney in the left channel and beat Simpson from ten yards with covering centre-back Fielding failing in his attempt to clear off the line.

Shortly afterwards, Simpson charged out to block from Devante Rodney after the away sub had sprinted through the right channel and Josh Hawkes also curled over from a 25-yard free kick.

Bruton, who had been introduced for Connolly early in the second half, went on to level the scores on 67 minutes, heading firmly into Tzanev’s bottom-left corner from eight yards after an excellent Holmes cross from the right.

Fellow replacement Gabby McGill then tested Tzanev with a header from Fielding’s corner before Fenwick hoofed a 25-yard attempt over the David Longhurst Stand.

Hartlepool went back ahead, though, on 75 minutes when a City move down the right broke down after Martina had lost possession and Jack Blackford played Simpson clear on goal for him to beat his exposed namesake from 12 yards.

A bouncing 25-yard drive by Fielding that flashed wide and a Bruton blocked effort were the best the Minstermen mustered in terms of a response.

At the other end, Simpson also saved well from Josh Nearney at the death.

City: Simpson; Rooney, Fielding, Rogerson; Martina (Freer, 82), Fenwick, Holmes, Jackson; Nti, Edmondson (McGill, 63), Connolly (Bruton, 55). Subs not used: Haswell, Whitley.