The Cumbrians have looked extremely solid defensively through their recent run, with another very strong performance from back to front on Tuesday night.
“I thought all three of our back three defended for their lives when they needed to,” manager Paul Simpson said.
“Mellish gives us something different and defensively he has that energy to break out from the back. Jack Armer put in one of his strongest performances, particularly in the first half, and Callum Guy was really influential in that role he enjoys.
“Paul Huntington worked incredibly hard and there are so many things that pleased me. We brought JK Gordon into the building because of his ability in the forward areas and he showed the attitude he’s got to working hard off the ball in this game.
“He was challenging and competing with everyone. He did things you wouldn’t expect him to, and I’m really pleased to see that. I said at full time that some of the football we played was excellent, but the two things that really pleased me were JK chasing back and winning tackles, and Joe Garner’s recovery run at the end to make that tackle.
“Unfortunately the big lad got injured and I think he’s on his way to hospital now for an x-ray. It was a real example from Joe for him to chase that down and want to win the ball. That’s what we need, we need players who will do that so that the standards stay high.
“I also have to say that the two wing-backs worked their socks off. Joel’s getting stronger as he plays more and more games, he’s getting fitter and more belief.
“You can’t really blame the defence for the goal, it was just a mistake from Mox unfortunately, and it gives them that lift. But Tomas came and took crosses, and I think the defending started from the front, the way the strikers worked to close things down, Gibbo and Moxon going and pressing, Callum Guy around Niang, they all did their jobs really well.”
The only negative from Tuesday night was the manner in which the goal was conceded.
“You have to iron mistakes like them out because against the better sides you might not get a second chance,” he told us. “It was a disappointing one to concede in that way because we were so in control at that point.
“If we stayed at 2-0 for five or ten minutes, they’d be pushing men forward and you end up getting more goals for yourself. Because we let them back in that way it made it a little bit more nervy than it needed to be.
“I’ll give credit to Hartlepool because they kept going and they kept trying to cause problems. They were direct and physical and they made it tough with the two strikers.
“I thought we were excellent defensively and I was pleased that Tomas relieved the pressure by coming out and taking crosses at key times in the game. That helped to kill any threat they had. It was good all round.”
“To be fair, all of the players are coming to the party, and that’s what we have to have,” he told us. “It was everybody together, including those who weren’t involved, because they were in the dressing room before the game wishing the lads well.
“And there are more to add even more to the competition with Jack Ellis hopefully back in training at the end of this week, if not next week, and we need everybody.
“We want them to stay together, keep doing the right things, keep getting the recovery right and keep all of the standards high.”