By Paul Brown
Southampton U21s produced an impressive second half comeback to claim a 3-3 draw with Villa U21s.
Gordon Cowans's side went into a three-goal lead in the first half, Daniel Devine, Daniel Johnson and Danny O'Brien with the excellent efforts.
But the game turned on the introduction of Saints sub Lloyd Isgrove, who entered the action just before the break.
Corby Moore pulled one back for the home side before the interval whistle and then Isgrove claimed a second soon after the restart.
He then set up Sam Hoskins at the death to claim a point.
It really was a game of two halves with Villa excelling throughout the opening period.
It didn't take long to claim the first goal, Devine heading home a bullet from a Courtney Cameron corner in the second minute.
And it was two-nil on 25 minutes, skipper Johnson picking up a brilliant throughball from Andras Stieber, before rounding the keeping and finishing with aplomb.
Two minutes later it was three to the good, O'Brien collecting the ball, controlling, spinning and hammering home.
At that point, it was a question of how many Villa would win by but Saints weren't finished by any stretch.
Moore curled a beautiful shot past Benji Siegrist just before the break, the Swiss keeper having little chance with the dipping effort.
It could have been oh so different for Villa had a penalty been awarded just after the break but Johnson was adjudged to have been hacked down right on the edge of the box and the subsequent free-kick came to nothing.
That seemed to be the game-changer and Saints looked strong from there-on-in.
Isgrove found himself in space in the right-hand channel of the box and slid the ball under Siegrist before laying on the equaliser with an agonising two minutes remaining.
Isgrove sent over a brilliant cross to Hoskins, who drilled the ball firm and true for the home side's decisive third.
VILLA: Siegrist, Bateman, Cameron, Ward, Devine, Williams, Barton, O'Brien [Calder], Graham, Johnson, Stieber [Watkins-Clark]. Subs: Melvin, Barratt, Sellers.