HAMMERS Under-18s earned a 1-1 draw against Reading at Little Heath thanks to a thunderous Chris Cohen goal.
Reading, managed by former West Ham United player Eamon Dolan, had the better of the first-half and took the lead on 12 minutes when Hayes hit a right foot shot that looped over helpless Hammers goalkeeper Darren Behcet.
But it was a different story in the second-half as Tony Carr's men rallied with tremendous determination. They found a deserved equaliser on 64 minutes when Chris Cohen drilled home a left-foot shot from the edge of the area to deny the Royals a Play-off spot in the FA Premier Academy League.
Although Hammers mounted almost continuous pressure on the Reading goal during the second-half there was no way through and it finished 1-1.
Tony Carr said: "It was a good game and the fact Reading had a chance of winning the League it gave an extra edge to the match. There was a purpose to everything that happened, but in the first-half we were disappointing and second best.
"We gave away a sloppy goal, but at half-time we addressed a few issues and came out for the second-half to dominate the game. It was a great equaliser, a really good move and a fine shot from Chris Cohen.
"There were plenty of other chances that we spurned and we could have won the game in the second-half. We tried to walk them in at times, but the draw was fair."
WHU: Darren Behcet, Jemel Henry (Tommy Laws 46 minutes), Ryan Andrews, Liam White, James Tomkins, David Cowley, Kyel Reid, Chris Cohen, Tony Stokes, Hogan Ephraim, Ishmael Welsh.
Cohen Strike Secures Draw