Saints miss their chance at the Traeth
THE New Saints missed their chance to go top of the table despite dominating matters at The Traeth.
Failure to convert chances cost them dear as the hosts got a point with Aden Shannon's second-half penalty.
The management decision to leave first-choice midfielders Aeron Edwards and Scott Ruscoe watching from the stands along with wingman Craig Jones proved expensive in hindsight, with Tommy Holmes drafted-in as a makeshift midfielder.
Early pressure yielded a goal on 21 minutes when Chris Seargeant's incisive pass fed Jamie Wood, who made no mistake with his volley.
It looked as though a comfortable win would be on the cards, but TNS failed to convert any of the chances that came their way before half-time, while Port were unable to even force a corner, let along test keeper Paul Harrison.
Steve Abbott spurned a heading chance from Seargeant's cross and Matthew Berkeley found the side netting with his header.
Abbott shot straight at keeper Richard Morgan after the break and Seargeant was unable to profit when, not for the first time, the keeper dropped the ball.
But, when Chris Marriott barged the lively Chris Jones, referee Markham-Jones pointed to the spot and Aden Shannon made no mistake.
Craig Williams and Alex Darlington were launched into the fray and were increasingly joined by Steve Evans up front, but Wood fired over from Berkeley's inside pass and Morgan got down well to keep out a well-struck Williams free-kick.
The Port defence survived some late pressure and the hosts almost snatched a shock winner when Jones sent his effort past a post.
And the Saints' frustration was evident when Phil Baker spoke out of turn to the official in stoppage time and received a red card for his pains to cap a disappointing night.