Stevenage skipper Carl Piergianni was left disappointed with the award of the penalty that gave Oxford United a draw - but he wasn't with the way the squad responded to a tough week.

It was the first game Boro had played since the departure of Steve Evans to Rotherham United, a decision which had been announced to the players after training on Wednesday.

But they were on course to get over that disappointment and take the three points after taking the lead through a Sam Long own-goal,

That was until a penalty for a foul by Piergianni on Ruben Rodrigues handed Cameron Brannagan the opportunity to equalise.

He took it but the Boro skipper felt it should have been a free-kick, with photographic evidence seeming to back him up.

Piergianni said: "There was a bit of contact but I was certain it was outside the box. 

"I haven't seen it back so I’m not sure but I was pretty certain it was outside the box. 

"But these things seem to happen to us, don't they? I'll carry it on my shoulders because I should have dealt with the ball anyway and then it's out of the hands of the referee."

The 1-1 draw at the Kassam finished off a "crazy 48 hours or so" but Piergianni believes the work done over the past two seasons, as well as the effort shown in Oxfordshire is a sign that the club are already moving on.

"You don't expect it," said the skipper. "You think things are just going to carry on and when it's been so positive, like it has over the last two years, it always takes you more by surprise.  

"When there’ve been negative results, you can see it coming.  

"But Steve has left the club in a great position and I'm sure the fans and everyone involved in the club are really thankful for that. 

"The club must move on and thankfully, the infrastructure and everything the chairman and Leon Hunter have built behind the scenes is right and the club can move forward. 

"We're all professionals in there and for whatever reason, we wanted to go and put a performance in. 

"A lot of us owe a lot to this club so we want to go and put in some big performances for the last two games while we’re wearing the shirt.

"We want to finish the season strong, not only for the gaffer but for Revs as well, for all the hard work he's done over the last 48 hours and for everyone else in the team, our own pride.  "We give it a go. We had our game plan and we knew we could affect them at the top end of the pitch because we've got some great attacking players 

"We nullified their threat a little bit, just some shots from distance. 

"We're just a little bit disappointed that we haven't come and got the three points." 

And while the season still has one game to go, at home to Cheltenham Town on Saturday, the post-mortems have already begun, with the skipper saying there could be mixed feelings in the summer.

He said: "It's a tough one because when you look back, yeah, it's been a great year with where we've finished.

"But I just think the nature of this group and everyone around the club, we were in such a great position and we always want to achieve and we always think we can do more than what we have. 

"With hindsight, we’ll say where we’ve finished is a great season, our first in League One.  

"But I think everyone will look at it as a missed opportunity and we'll be going into the summer a little bit gutted."