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FULL-TIME: Bury 4 Portsmouth 4
HALLAM Hope claimed Bury’s first league hat-trick for 14 years but the Shakers failed to hang on for the win as Portsmouth scored two late goals to force a draw.
The on-loan Everton striker put in a scintillating first-half display to send David Flitctroft’s side into the break 2-0 up.
Hope headed Bury in front in the ninth minute following a Clive Platt knockdown then rifled an angled drive past Trevor Carson.
Things went from bad to worse for Carson – the Shakers stopper on loan at Portsmouth – after Andy Procter glanced in a header from Danny Mayor’s cross four minutes after the break.
But the visitors, who went into the game on the back of five straight victories, quickly pulled one back as Danny Hollands pounced to turn home the loose ball following a scramble in the box.
The goal knocked Bury off their stride and, as their tempo dropped, Pompey pulled another back with 10 minutes remaining as Ryan Taylor’s scruffy shot crept inside the near post.
It looked like Flitcroft’s men would claim all three points, however, after Hope fired in his third in the 87th minute to equal a mark last set by Ian Lawson in August, 1999.
But scrambled efforts from Sonny Bradley, a minute from time, and Wes Fogden in the third minute of stoppage time took the gloss off Bury’s final home match of their League Two campaign.
The point, which kept them 10th, did at least ensure the Shakers retained their unbeaten record at the JD Stadium under Flitcroft, which stretches back 13 games to the manager's appointment in December.