The 20-year-old frontman was handed a surprise start in the first home game of Phillips reign on Tuesday night as his side claimed a 3-1 win against Witton Albion.
Hodgson was integral to the win as he scored two goals that would not have looked out of place in his manager’s repertoire during his playing career.
The striker restored his side’s lead nine minutes before half-time after Cedric Main’s opener had been cancelled out by a free-kick from Albion debutant Jesse Dowling.
Hodgson would double his tally midway through the second-half as he tapped home from close-range after a cross-shot from Blair Adams had been parried by visitors keeper Greg Hall.
The young striker revealed his delight at working under Phillips and is eager to continue impressing the Sunderland legend.
He told the Gazette: “It’s been incredible for me and I don’t think there is a better person in the North East to work under as a striker.
“Everyone knows what he has done at Sunderland and all of the clubs he has been at.
“For me, it’s massive because he has come in, believed in me and given me that chance tonight.
“It’s one of them where he said he needed a bold chairman to throw him into his first job in management - and I needed him to be bold and give me a chance.
“I think I’ve paid him back with those goals tonight.”
Hodgson will now hope to have done enough to keep his place when the Mariners host Northern Premier League leaders Matlock Town in a top of the table clash this Saturday.
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