Sunderland Under-23s exited the Premier League Cup after being held to a 1-1 draw by Hull at Eppleton CW tonight.
The Black Cats needed a big win in their final group game to stand a chance of pipping Brighton to second place in Group H.
But it was never a likely outcome, despite dominating much of the match.
Bottom-of-the-group Hull struck first, against the run of play, when Keane Lewis-Potter finished at the back post, after keeper Max Stryjek failed to catch a free-kick.
Stryjek made a superb save to deny the Tigers a second goal, and Sunderland levelled late on, thanks to a late strike from Luke Molyneux, capping his return to action.
Sunderland finish with seven points from their six games. Exeter and Brighton progress to the last 16.
Sunderland U23s: Stryjek, J Robson, Hume, Gamble, Storey, Galloway, Connelly (Molyneux 68), Hackett, Shields (Kimpioka 45), Embleton, Diamond. Subs: Taylor, Talbot, Brotherton