Matt Green was again the hero last night as he scored twice to help Stags come from behind at Hereford, moving them two points clear at the top of the table with ONE game remaining.
Green, along with Lindon Meikle, put in a man of the match display as Stags demonstrated their desire and belief to overturn Ryan Bowman's eight minute opener.
Lindon Meikle's clipped cross made the leveller on 37 as Green nodded in, before substitute Matt Rhead flicked into Green's path in the dying seconds to steal the points and make it advantage Mansfield going into Saturday's show down with Wrexham.
The match is available in two parts due to a recording fault, meaning there are roughly three minutes not recorded (60-63)
Matt Green's 24th goal of the season yesterday could well have sent Mansfield back into the football league, however the promotion tale took another twist as Stags lost their grip on top spot, losing 2-1 at Braintree.
Stags were two points clear at the top of the table prior to kick off and would have gone five clear had they won at Braintree.
Matt Green got the Stags off to an excellent start on eight minutes as he fired them ahead from Lee Beevers' exquisite long range pass. The Stags, buoyed by the opener kicked on but failed to get a second, Green slammed against the post whilst Daniel, Briscoe & Stevenson all saw efforts blocked.
The second half was a total nightmare, Braintree levelling on the hour mark through Matt Paine with a tame long range effort which should have been closed down, before Kaine Sheppard netted what proved to be the winner 14 minutes later.
Stags then cursed Braintree keeper Nathan McDonald as he thrice denied Matt Rhead, time proved to short in the end and Braintree wrecked the Stag Party, ruined further by the 5.15pm kick off as Kidderminster moved back to top of the table, beating Wrexham 2-1.
Simply Mansfield need to win their next two matches to go up as Champions.
Lee Stevenson was arguably pick of the bunch last night as Stags finally topped the blue square bet premier and put themselves in pole position to take the crown with a 3-1 win over Macclesfield Town.
The Stags in beating the other MTFC equaled yet more records as they grabbed their 28th win of the season, leveling the achievement last met in the 1967-77 campaign - moving onto 89 points, their highest total accumulated in one term, set last season.
More importantly the victory over the silkmen takes Stags two points clear of now second placed Kidderminster. Should Stags win at Braintree, the pressure is pilled on Kidderminster as they have to WIN to stay in the race, theoretically Stags could be back in the football league by 7pm Saturday night!
It was a night where Stags should have felt immense pressure after squandering the chance to top the table last week, however they played like Champions and were comfortable winners of a Macclesfield side that have failed to reach their targets of the play-offs this term. Matt Green opened the scoring and broke the tense atmosphere on 17 minutes as he flicked home Adam Murray's left sided free kick before Luke Jones doubled the Stags lead with a thumping header, again from a Murray free kick four minutes prior to the break.
Four minutes into the second half a delightful strike from Lee Stevenson made it 3-0 to keep the momentum flowing, the only disappointment coming in the final minute as Pablo Mills, a former Stags trialist, headed home a mere consolation for the visitors.
Due to a recording fault, there are only highlights from the second half available for this match
Mansfield Town got back to winning way's yesterday in beautiful Barrow as the coolly saw off a resistant and tough Barrow side by four goals to nil.
Paul Cox's Stags responded brilliantly to defeat in Wrexham less than 42 hours prior to kick-off at Barrow to break yet more club records, the victory at Holker Street is the clubs 12th away win of the season - the most ever collected in a single single, beating the previous total of 11.
Four goals at Holker Street added to the EIGHT scored at the One Call Stadium in early February also totals up to make another record, the 12 in total scored against Barrow is a new club high for the most goals scored against an opponent (combined home and away) in a season.
It could have been oh so different had Alan Marriott not put in a man of the match performance, his penalty save and subsequent save of the rebound on 27 minutes from Richie Baker completely changed the swing of the game as lady luck switched sides. Barrow struck the post twice, hit the bar and forced Marriott into a number of fine stops throughout the match.
Matt Green grabbed his 21st of the season to open the scoring on 29 minutes as a fluent move saw Junior Daniel unselfishly pull the ball back across the six yard line allowing Green a typical poachers strike. Louis Briscoe was then upended on 41 minutes earning the Stags a penalty which Green coolly tucked home before three players laid claim to Stags third goal on the hour mark. Adam Murray claims his free kick went in whilst Lee Stevenson claimed a touch and celebrated as if he'd scored, sprinting to the away support of 300 and ripping his top off, whilst John Dempster slammed the ball into the net at the far post - he awarded the goal by the Press Association who had the same view as us inside the press box, blocked by the numerous pillions.
Stevenson then wrapped things up in the final minute, tapping over the line following Matt Rhead's unselfish assist - the late goal keeps Stags level on goal difference with Kidderminster as they ran out 3-0 winners at home to Lincoln. The Harriers remain top but have SIX points to play for now whilst Stags are a POINT behind with a huge TWELVE to play for, the first of two remaining games in hand comes on Tuesday as Stags host Macclesfield.
Matt Green's 20th strike of the season, his 50th club goal in all competitions for Stags, didn't prove enough for Stags to put another three points on the board as their winning run came to an end at Wrexham last night.
Luke Jones controversially saw a goal ruled out five minutes into the second half before his thunderous header bounced off the bar and saw Green tap home on 53 minutes.
Alan Marriott then fumbled Dean Keates' free kick as Wrexham levelled on 68 before a fluent move saw Danny Wright smash home the winner eleven minutes later.
Defeat for Stags leaves them as they were, in second place a point behind Kidderminster however they now have TWO games in hand, against Macclesfield on Tuesday at the One Call and then the trip to Hereford the following week.
The returning Anthony Howell rounded off a man of the match display yesterday with an opening goal against Gateshead, helping Stags onto a 12th consecutive win to equal the all time Football Conference record, held jointly by Hereford and Burton.
Howell's fourth goal of the season came on 21 minutes after Gateshead keeper Adam Bartlett had tipped the impressive Adam Murray's free kick onto the cross bar and proved the only goal at half time.
Louis Briscoe doubled Stags' lead on 73 with a well hit left footed effort before Matt Green added his 19th of the season five minutes later.
Substitute Ben Hutchinson then sealed the win late on, netting a penalty in the last minute after his free kick was handled inside the box.
Another three points for Stags keeps them in second as Kidderminster again won, however on Thursday Mansfield play their first game in hand on the Harriers as they travel to Wrexham, who now drop down to fourth and trail behind by ten points. The victory, the 12th on the spin, also seals Stags place in the play-offs as 6th place Forest Green, are behind by 18 points with only 15 left to play for whilst goalkeeper Alan Marriott has now secured 50 clean sheets for the club.
Luke Jones was the man of the moment once more yesterday as his 7th goal of the season proved the decisive factor for the Stags 11th straight victory, this time seeing off Tamworth at The Lamb ground.
It was yet another scrappy game which could have pivoted either way, Tamworth threw everything at Stags in their quest for safety but Paul Cox's side stood firm in keeping up the pace with Kidderminster.
At the other end Liam Mitchell kept out his former club on countless occasions as Mansfield knocked on the door so hard, they came away with bruised and blooded knuckles. Jones, outstanding at the heart of the Stags back four, proved his menace at the other end too, driving home debutant Greg Taylor's deep free kick on 61 minutes in front of over 1,100 Stags fans, who out numbered the home fans 3 to 1.
Jones vital goal keeps Stags in a frustrating second as Kidderminster came from behind to beat Braintree with the fortune of an Iron own goal, they remain top but have the agony of watching on as Stags have three games in hand, the first coming on Thursday night when Cox's men goto Wrexham who now trail Stags by eight points in third - having played the same amount of games as us and of course us still to play twice.
Louis Briscoe came from the bench last night to keep Stags on course for the title, netting the only goal of a frustrating game against relegation threatened Nuneaton Town.
Briscoe's 67th minute minute free kick earned Stags' tenth straight win, equaling an all time club record set in 1915/16 and moving them within a point of Kidderminster who stumbled at home to Woking.
It looked like it wasn't going to be as Stags spurned numerous first half efforts including three off target headers from Junior Daniel, a Luke Jones thumper crashing against the bar and Matt Green striking the post - the Striker also saw a 63rd minute spot kick saved after substitute Matt Rhead was felled following a Chapman corner.
A solid defensive display from Luke Jones helped Stags move to top of the Blue Square Premier last night as they triumphed over promotion rivals Forest Green Rovers by two goals to one at the New Lawn.
An own goal from Rovers' Eddie Oshodi following Lindon Meikle's 29th minute effort opened the scoring before Lee Stevenson doubled Stags' lead two minutes into the second half following an interchange with Matt Green.
James Norwood set up a tense finish as he netted five minutes from full time to make it 2-1, however determined as ever, Stags hung on and claimed top spot in the blue square premier, remaing their tonight (Saturday) after Wrexham's goalless draw with Luton - this sets up a classic encounter midweek when Stags travel to Wrexham.
Due to a recording fault, the audio uploaded may be slightly distorted - for best results please have your volume down low
Stags moved to joint top of the division yesterday with a convincing 4-1 win over Stockport County at the One Call Stadium, a match in which Adam Chapman became the first player to net a hat-trick on his home debut since Keith Cassells during the 1984/85 campaign.
The Oxford loanee delighted Stags fans with a fine performance and netted the opening goal after 13 minutes, stabbing into the empty net after Matt Green was denied by an excellent one handed save from Stockport's Richard O'Donnell.
Seven minutes later Chapman doubled the lead from 18 yards following a deep James Jennings free kick before Matt Green added the third goal of the afternoon eleven minutes into the second half.
Stockport substitute Paul Marshall netted a sublime goal on 69 minutes from the edge of the area to give the hatters some hope, however the impressive Chapman completed his hat-trick eight minutes later curling home from the edge of the area following Lindon Meikle's assist.
The victory puts Stags joint top but in third place on goal difference ahead of crunch game with Grimsby, Forest Green, Wrexham and Macclesfield over the next two weeks.
On this page you can find a mini-report plus downloadable audio highlights after each home match, plus team & stat sheets and occasional extended or full audio