Chester FC were cruelly denied an important three points with the final action of the match as Grimsby earned a share of the spoils. Padraig Amond's last ditch header cancelled out Ross Hannah's opening goal from the penalty spot in a much improved performance from the Blues.
Steve Burr made three changes from the side that were beaten at Tranmere on Saturday. Michael Kay, Craig Mahon and Josh O'Hanlon made way for George Thomson, Jordan Chapell and Craig Hobson as the Chester boss looked to attack infront of the home crowd.
It was a lively opening, with both sides looking to create chances. Craig Hobson saw an early effort blocked inside the penalty area, while Omar Bogle's low effort almost wrong-footed Blues 'keeper Jon Worsnop.
George Thomson, recalled to the starting line-up, went close to opening the scoring shortly after ten minutes as he turned his man well before firing straight at James McKeown.
Midway through the first half the visitors had a golden opportunity to open the scoring, centre back Ben Heneghan failed to clear and in-form Omar Bogle found himself one on one with Jon Worsnop. Fortunately for the Blues Worsnop was equal to Bogle's effort and Chester survived the scare.
On the stroke of half time George Thomson nearly created the opening for Chester. The crafty midfielder intercepted Aristote Nsiala's header and beat two before firing a cross the face of goal but nobody was able to get a touch to turn it in.
The second half was far more open but both sides struggled to get chances away, Chester came close on a couple of occasions to sliding Ross Hannah in while in good positions, while Omar Bogle looked dangerous once more for the visitors.
It was the visitors that had the first telling effort of the half as Aristote Nsiala saw his header hooked off the line by John Rooney. Moments later and Andy Monkhouse fired over the bar from the edge of the area as the Mariners pushed for the opening goal.
Chester continued to work the right channel with Ross Hannah and Jordan Chapell exchanging passes before the former screwed his shot wide of James McKeown's right post.
The deadlock was broken in the 73rd minute as Ross Hannah went down under pressure from Gregor Robertson and referee Jason Whiteley pointed to the penalty spot. Hannah brushed himself off and confidently fired home into the top corner, beating the dive of James McKeown to give the Blues the lead.
Chester almost made it two moments later as Ross Hannah again was causing problems and found Jordan Chapell in plenty of space but the Chester winger waited a fraction too long before pulling the trigger and Grimsby's defence managed to get back to make a good block.
Blues 'keeper Jon Worsnop had to be alert to danger as Grimsby looked for an equaliser and he was quickly off his line to dive at Craig Disley's feet and deny the Mariners midfielder.
The visitors almost equalised as the game went into added time as substitute Jon-Paul Pittman found space down the wing before seeing his cross deflected to Omar Bogle who couldn't find the target.
Grimsby kept coming and despite blocks from Rooney, Higgins and Peers the Mariners managed to get an equaliser in the 95th minute as Padraig Amond headed home to earn the visitors a point.
Chester: Worsnop, Higgins, Heneghan, Sharps (c), Hunt, Shaw, Rooney, Thomson (Hughes 67), Chapell (Richards 80), Hobson (Peers 84), Hannah
Subs Not used: Forth, Kay
Grimsby: McKeown, Robertson, Pearson (Pittman 88), Disley (c), Bogle, Amond, Monkhouse (Mackreth 77), Arnold, Nsiala, East, Robinson (Clay 70)
Subs Not used: Tait, Gowling
Goals: Chester: Hannah (pen 73). Grimsby: Amond (90+5)
Booked: Chester: Heneghan. Grimsby: Bogle, Pearson.
Attendance: 1,964 (357 from Grimsby)
Man of the match: Chester: Ross Hannah. Grimsby: Aristote Nsiala.
Referee: Jason Whitely
Assistant Referee: Barry Lamb, Martyn Rawcliffe
Fourth Official: Hristo Karaivanov
Match Report by Chris Graham