Hartlepool benefit from controversial refereeing to see off Accrington
Hartlepool benefited from controversial refereeing as Nicky Deverdics and Lewis Alessandra earned a 2-0 Sky Bet League Two win over Accrington.
Pools were given a shock penalty - Mark Hughes was subsequently sent off - in the 60th minute, with Deverdics scoring the follow-up after Elliot Parish denied Padraig Amond.
And Alessandra added a second in injury time to secure the points.
Accrington dominated the opening period, Billy Kee spurning three golden chances either side of Alessandra forcing a smart stop from Parish.
But the game turned when referee Richard Clark intervened, apparently adjudging Hughes to have pulled back Amond amid Toto Nsiala seeing a header brilliantly saved.
Amond missed the spot-kick but, after Accrington denied two subsequent efforts in a scramble, the ball set up for Deverdics to unfurl a sublime bicycle kick.
Parish then made two fine saves to keep Accrington afloat, and they almost levelled as Paddy Lacey saw a header cleared off the line before Trevor Carson brilliantly denied Romuald Boco.
Stanley's misery was compounded when Alessandra slotted home Amond's fine cross in injury time.