Hartlepool United caretaker boss Sam Collins praises players after 2-1 win at Exeter City

Charlie Wyke celebrates his goal against Exeter City. Picture by FRANK REID

Charlie Wyke celebrates his goal against Exeter City. Picture by FRANK REID

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CARETAKER manager Sam Collins has hailed his “awesome” Hartlepool United players after they won 2-1 at Exeter City.

Second-half goals from Michael Woods, his first for the club, and Charlie Wyke secured the three points, which saw Pools climb off the bottom of the Football League.

Exeter City scored in the 80th minute to reduce the deficit through Christian Ribeiro but Collins’ side held firm.

Beaming Collins said: “The players were awesome, every single one of them.

“That is what I have asked of them all week and we got better again as the game went on.

“We kept counter attacking and could have scored three or four and handled the situation well when they got back into the game.

“Overall, I am delighted with how the players did.

“The goals were superb.”

Collins took over as caretaker manager after Colin Cooper handed in his notice last weekend.

The win over Exeter City saw Pools climb to fourth bottom of Sky Bet League Two, with 11 points from their opening 11 matches.

He added: “Everybody had a job to do and the job was to get this football team organised and to start winning football matches.

“We had one or two good chances first half to take the lead and then the second-half we opened them up time and time again.”

Collins said he was delighted to see Woods score his first goal for the club and also praised the performance of the younger players including Lewis Hawkins.

* See Monday’s SportMail for full match reaction, analysis and pictures from the win over Exeter City.