Chris Beech admitted Jack Armer was in disbelief when he scored his first senior goal for Carlisle United.

The teenage defender achieved the memorable moment in his burgeoning career by heading home the Blues’ opener against Barrow.

Armer’s third-minute goal was his first at first-team level in the Football League and came in his 21st Carlisle appearance.

It was another big moment for a promising young player and head coach Beech said: “I don’t think he knew what to do after he’d done it!

“It’s important we carry on scoring goals from free play and in set-play situations.

“It was a great header, a good move. I’m disappointed it wasn’t part of three points.”

Beech also praised Offrande Zanzala for showing the confidence to take United’s equalising penalty which earned a 2-2 draw at Holker Street.

It was only Carlisle’s second spot-kick of the campaign, their other having been scored by Lewis Alessandra against Newport back in November.

Zanzala, though, stepped up against Barrow after being fouled by James Jones.

Beech said: “I’m pleased he’s put the penalty away and disappointed he didn’t get more shots off in free play. But one thing he is is a handful.

“He didn’t look like he’d get a goal [in this game] but he’s got the confidence to do what he’s gone and done.

“He didn’t get that space in the box, wasn’t quite lively like he has been, but he’s been brilliant [in recent weeks], as have all the lads.”

Beech said the decision on who took the penalty was down to the players – the same as other decisions made during the game.

News and Star: Offrande Zanzala (photo: Barbara Abbott)Offrande Zanzala (photo: Barbara Abbott)

“The way we want to play, and get our attacking players to take players on, full-backs to get forward in the last third and produce crosses, midfielders get the foot on the ball and pass forwards not backwards…it’s ironic that it’s against my will that we’ve passed back and conceded the way we have rather than attack forwards down the line,” he said.

“Footballers have to make the decisions in the games and that’s another one. Ozzy was confident to score and he did.”

Beech, meanwhile, has credited his players’ mentality for keeping their campaign alive after the challenges of their winter disruption and the “stick” that came during their recent win-starved run.

Carlisle have taken 10 points out of the last 12 after improving from a run of one win in 13.

Beech said: “If you look at it, we looked a bit jaded [against Barrow], if I’m being honest.

“It’s alright people ignoring this fact of what we’ve been through since Christmas, put in a position to play Saturday-Tuesday-Saturday all the time.

“We don’t get the in between bit, but the boys are going right at it.

“They’ve had to deal with psychology of not getting what they wanted in that period of getting their stats up, the physical fitness.

“They’ve taken stick off the outside situations and media situations that enhances fans’ opinions, and they’ve come back and said, ‘No we want to try and do something.’ I think they did that in this game.”