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Grimsby 3 Notts County 2
By: Rob Sedgwick
GRIMSBY hung on against a resilient Notts County to record a 3-2 win over their East Midlands rivals and extend their unbeaten run to three games. Town went ahead three times, only for the Magpies twice to claw the match back to level pegging. Bull, Parkinson and Whittle scored Grimsby's goals.
Town, as expected, made just one change, bringing back Terrell Forbes in place of Rob Jones in a continuation of their "new" 4-4-2 formation.
Grimsby started strongly and almost took the lead when a Colin Cramb shot rounded off a good attack with just five minutes on the clock. Within a minute, however, Town had gone one better. An attempted back-pass by Baudet was intercepted by the tenacious Ronnie Bull, who managed to slide the ball in from a narrow angle and put Town 1-0 up.
In the middle period of the first half County had their best spell of the game and looked particularly threatening in Town's weak spot of corners and high balls into the box. The equaliser, however, came out of the blue when a speculative 30-yard belter by Stefan Oakes ended up in the back of the net on 18 minutes.
Jason Crowe should have put Town back in front when he was put clean through on goal by the impressive Cramb, but his shot was saved when Wayne Henderson managed to stick out a leg to block the former Pompey midfielder's shot.
At the other end a Crowe defensive header had to be cleared off the line by Macca.
Towards the end of the first half Town came back into the game and twice had shots which hit the woodwork (courtesy of Parkinson and Pinault).
With just four minutes of the second half on the clock Town were back in front. A Dean Gordon touch saw the ball fall to Parkinson in the box. Town's hitherto unluckiest striker somehow managed to make contact with the ball ahead of the defender, and it just managed to trickle over the line in a change of fortune for the Liverpudlian.
County predictably came back into the game following a string of corners. The ball was cleared off the line by Bull, only to land up at the feet of Gavin Gordon, who poked the ball home from close range. Within five minutes Town were fortunate to see a Glynn Hurst goal disallowed for offside.
For the last ten minutes Russell Slade brought on Sestanovich and Reddy, and the double substitution had an immediate impact, albeit not directly resulting in the winning goal. A Pinault re-taken free kick was weighted perfectly for Whittle to jump up and power home his first ever goal for the Mariners.
Town hung on for the last few minutes to record another valuable win, which consolidates their mid-table position just short of the play-off zone. Saturday sees the Mariners head to Somerset to take on in-form Yeovil, where former striker Phil Jevons is the division's leading scorer so far this season.
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