Midweek League 2 round-up

A look around League 2 and all the goals

Exeter City were dealt a second home defeat in four days after Max Kretzschmar’s lob beat Christy Pym and gave Wycombe Wanderers a vital three points in their battle to avoid relegation. 

The match brought to an end a disappointing run of three home games in the space of eight days, from which the Grecians have taken just the one point.  Chairboys boss Gareth Ainsworth was understandably delighted at his side’s second win in succession, after they had seen off league leaders Chesterfield by the same scoreline on Saturday.  “The lads are absolutely dead on their feet,” he said.  “I couldn’t be prouder of the team, everything was fantastic.  We probably have to get a couple of players in, if I’m being honest, but that’s for cover.  No-one deserves to lose their place in the team.  We’ve got a big run of games coming up – and we believe we can go to Southend on Saturday and win.”

Chris Hackett was the match-winner for Northampton

Next up for the Grecians it’s an important trip to Bootham Crescent to play York City.  The Minstermen weren’t in action on Tuesday evening, but Saturday’s 0-0 draw at home to Southend United was the fourth home match in a row that Nigel Worthington’s men have failed to get themselves onto the scoresheet.  The promotion-chasing Shrimpers suffered a setback on Tuesday as they were beaten at Northampton Town, who moved off the bottom of the Sky Bet League 2 table for the first time in 2014 as a result.  Mathias Kouo-Doumbé headed the Cobblers in front from Chris Hackett’s corner before Michael Timlin levelled things up for Phil Brown’s side.  Hackett had the final say though as he scored to hand United a seventh league game without a win, and give a 2-1 victory to the Cobblers.  “Quite simply, we didn’t match them in the battle in the second half and that was the difference between the two teams,” Brown said following the game.  “Northampton fully deserved to win the game.  They looked like they were fighting for their lives and we have to have that kind of mentality from now until the end of the season.”

Dan Gardner got the ball rolling for Chesterfield in a crazy few minutes against Cheltenham

All eyes were on Whaddon Road yesterday as leaders Chesterfield scored an incredible four goals in seven minutes at Cheltenham Town.  Dan Gardner got things under way midway through the first half, before Eoin Doyle, Ollie Banks and Liam Cooper all got in on the act before ten further minutes had passed.  A shell-shocked Robins side somehow managed to keep the Spireites out for the remainder of the game, and even pulled one back through Byron Harrison, but the result in this one had been decided before even half an hour had passed. 

Plymouth Argyle also got themselves four goals, in stark contrast to their performance ten days earlier when they lost 4-0 at home to York, as they won by that same scoreline at fifth-placed Fleetwood Town.  The Pilgrims are up to eighth now, and on Tuesday it was Reuben Reid who put them ahead with his 16th goal of the season.  Luke Young made it 2-0 with a deflected effort, before Maxime Blanchard and Conor Hourihane helped themselves to goals to seal the comfortable victory for John Sheridan’s side.

Former Exeter City striker Daniel Nardiello got a brace as Bury also scored four in their visit to Mansfield Town; Danny Mayor got Bury’s first before Nardiello got two more.  Sam Clucas pulled one back but the three-goal gap was reinstated almost immediately as Jake Carroll got number four to take David Flitcroft’s side seven points clear of the bottom two.  And both goals came in the first half as Torquay United hit back for a 1-1 draw at home to Burton Albion. Damien McCrory put Gary Rowett’s side in front just a few minutes before Elliot Benyon drew his side level, but Northampton’s win means that the Gulls have now dropped to the foot of the Football League.

Sam Winnall extended his tally for Scunthorpe, but Bristol Rovers found an equaliser

Steven Gillespie’s late header for Bristol Rovers caused Scunthorpe United to drop points, therefore allowing Chesterfield to pull clear at the top.  League 2 top-scorer Sam Winnall found the target again for his 18th this term and for a long time it appeared that Russ Wilcox’s side were going to remain level on points with the Spireites, but Gillespie struck two minutes from time as it finished 1-1.  The key information for Exeter City fans from this one was that Alan Gow was stretchered off after 53 minutes, with the on-loan Grecian possibly sustaining ligament damage, according to Rovers’ official Twitter account.

A Jake Jervis goal handed Portsmouth a 1-0 Fratton Park win over AccringtonStanley as Richie Barker’s side moved seven points clear of the drop-zone.  Finally, former Cardiff City player Kevin Sainte-Luce scored the winner at Newport County AFC as AFC Wimbledon secured a come-from-behind 2-1 victory.  The Dons scored all the goals, goalkeeper Ross Worner scoring an own goal by fumbling a cross into his own net, but Charlie Sheringham and Sainte-Luce both scoring in a three-minute period to bring Neal Ardley’s side’s four-game losing streak to an end.  It means consecutive losses for the Exiles.