BURY were forced to settle for a point despite controlling the second half against spirited League Two strugglers Northampton.

Ryan Lowe’s men, had to dig deep to stay afloat in an entertaining and frenetic first 45 minutes despite a blistering start.

But they regained the edge after the break when David Cornell’s fine save from Jay O’Shea’s 30-yard free-kick and Leon Barnett throwing himself in the way of a blast from the impressive Danny Mayor denied them the extra points.

Predictably, Bury had to resist a highly-committed Cobblers display during new manager Keith Curle’s first match in charge.

A draw was probably a fair outcome as both teams merited reward for their efforts.

Defender Adam Thompson was unlucky to see his header come back off the bar in the third minute following Mayor’s free-kick.

Nicky Adams and Adam Thompson also sent volleys just off target as Bury dominated the opening 15 minutes.

But Northampton hit back in spirited fashion, with Bury being rushed into a series of defensive mistakes.

O’Shea was fortunate not to be punished when he appeared to block a Matt Crooks header with his arm before Andy Williams nudged just wide after fastening onto Aimson’s short back-pass.

Murphy also presented the ball straight to Sam Hoskins from a short goal kick but twice came to his side’s rescue by denying the Cobblers striker from close-range.

Bury continued to have their own fair share of chances, with Barnett getting in the path of a venomous Byron Moore shot and the sliding Nicky Maynard just unable to get a final touch to a superb Callum McFadzean cross.

Although Matt Crooks dragged a 47th-minute shot wide, it was mostly Bury after the break.

But they struggled to create clear sights of goals, despite the darting runs of Mayor.

O’Shea dragged one effort wide from 20 yards and Maynard was unable to get sufficient power in his shot after good play by Nicky Adams

Lowe introduced Dom Telford in place of Maynard in the closing stages and the substitute was close to winning the game with an angled shot in added time.