Harry Chapman scored as Rovers Under-23s battled back from 2-0 down to draw with Brighton.

Chapman, starting his fourth consecutive match for Damien Johnson's side, scored a 72nd minute equaliser at Leyland.

Rovers were the better side for long spells, particularly in the second half, but trailed at the break to two Max Sanders strikes at the break.

Jack Vale reduced the arrears in the 47th minute before Chapman's equaliser. 

With Tyler Magloire withdrawn to be available for first team duty, Charley Doyle captained the side with Hayden Carter coming in alongside him.

Stefan Mols and Jack Vale also returned to the starting line-up in place of Ben Brereton and Joe Nuttall who had played the last two matches.

Rovers could have led inside 20 seconds, as a rampaging Dan Butterworth run saw him waltz his way through the Brighton defence, but one-on-one with the ‘keeper, could only poke the ball wide.

The good start continued as Stefan Mols tested visiting keeper Robert Sanchez from the edge of the box.

But that good work was undone in the 14th minute when Brighton, second in the table, took the lead. Viktor Gyokeres crossed from the right wing and found the run of midfielder Max Sanders who nodded in from close range.

There was a competitive edge to the game, with both John Buckley and Jayson Molumby both in the book inside 25 minutes.

Sanders was proving to be the difference between the sides though, as he double his, and Brighton’s tally in the 28th minute. His left foot shot from the edge of the box clipped the post and found its way in to the bottom corner.

Rovers should have soon reduced their arrears as when Buckley’s delivery wasn’t dealt with, Joe Rankin-Costello found himself in space three yards out, only to poke the ball wide.

Their pressure continued as a left wing Lewis Thompson cross was met by a good run from Stefan Mols, with his header palmed away by Sanchez.

Having had the majority of the chances, Rovers will have been disappointed to go in behind. But they enjoyed a perfect start to the second period, as via a deflection, Vale turned in at the far post after being found by a low right-wing cross in the 47th minute.

The quest for an equaliser saw Lewis Thompson curl an effort wide of the target.

There was a moment of concern for Rovers ‘keeper Charlie Albinson who was almost caught out by a long kick from opposite number Sanchez. The ball travelled 70 yards before bouncing over his head, before the ‘keeper scrambled back to clear.

Sanchez would stick to his day job though, pulling off a fine save to deny Butterworth’s shot which looked destined for the bottom corner after a driving run forward.

Rankin-Costello was enjoying lots of space down the right, and after good link up with Mols, fired wide, as Rovers began to ramp up their pressure.

And that would pay off with 18 minutes to go as Chapman picked up the ball, beat two men, and after steadying himself, rifled a shot in to the bottom corner.

In what was a terrific second half display, Rovers almost led as Butterworth whipped in a terrific cross which Vale met on the stretch, with the ball agonisingly missing the far post.

Rovers had to be content with a draw, and sit three points above the bottom two with three games remaining. 

Rovers: Albinson, Rankin-Costello, Carter, C Doyle, Thompson, Buckley, Davenport, Butterworth, Mols, Chapman, Vale

Subs: Annesley, Eastham, Whitehall, Saadi, Pike

Brighton: Sanchez, Davies, Cochrane, Roberts, Ostigard, O’Hora (Collings, 80), Sanders, Molumby, Radulovic (Davies, 69), Gyokeres, Ahannach

Subs: Moore, Collings, Longman