Maidstone United 1 Hartlepool United 2

Hartlepool United's two-goal hero Michael Woods.
Hartlepool United's two-goal hero Michael Woods.

Matthew Bates’ Hartlepool United chargers have made a massive stride towards safety with a 2-1 victory at Maidstone United.

Michael Woods bagged a brace, one from the penalty spot, to bank the points to make today a Good day all round for Hartlepool United.

The midfielder netted his 10th and 11th goals of the season before Pools held off a late fightback from The Stones to clinch three crucial points in their battle for safety in the National League.

Seven minutes of injury time was displayed, and Maidstone grabbed a late lifeline when Lafayette scored after Pools failed to clear the danger.

That goal set up a nervy finish and Lafayette could even have levelled when his header looped high, and then Wynter drilled wide right at the death.

However, Pools managed to hang on to extend their unbeaten run to five games and leapfrog their hosts in the National League table.

Pools: Loach, Hawkins, Magnay, Laing, Adams, Featherstone, Hawkes, Newton, Woods, Cassidy, Oates. Subs: Catterick, Owen, Munns, Orrell, Rodney.

Maidstone: Worgan, De Havilland, Lewis, Reason, Finney, Hare, Wynter, Anderson, Turgott, Luer, Lafayette. Subs: Loza, Sam-Yorke, Paxman, Ofori-Twumasi, Phillips.

Referee: Sam Purkiss

Attendance: 2,559 (209 Pools fans)