Shrewsbury Town produce another valuable victory in their survival bid as they record a welcome win against promotion hopefuls Doncaster Rovers.
A much needed second victory in the space of three days, both against sides that Shrewsbury were expected to lose against.
Their latest win against Doncaster, came courtesy of two first half goals from Josh Laurent and Tyrese Campbell.
Town survived a second half onslaught as Grant McCann’s side rallied; but Shrewsbury held on to take all three points.
Sam Ricketts made four changes from the side that beat Peterborough 2-1. Ryan Haynes, Greg Docherty, Fejiri Okenabirhie, and James Bolton, replaced Scott Golbourne, Ollie Norburn, Aaron Amadi-Holloway, and Omar Beckles.
Town pressed high up the pitch during the first half, which was effective against a Rovers side who are renowned for possession football.
Shrewsbury created bundles of chances too as they displayed their attacking intent early on. Stoke City loanee Tyrese Campbell was like roadrunner through the middle, as Rovers couldn’t cope with his pace; his final effort just went past the post.
Then, Fejiri Okenabirhie evaded Tom Anderson’s challenge and fired agonisingly wide of Marko Marosi’s goal.
It was all Town with the home side demonstrating their prowess which had been sadly lacking until the weekend. Campbell was fed by a precise Greg Docherty through ball, but the forward was denied by a top Marko Marosi stop.
In the 18th minute, Sam Ricketts’ side deservedly opened the scoring. Doncaster failed to clear their lines, and the ball dropped kindly to Josh Laurent. The former Wigan Athletic midfielder curled the ball beyond the reaches of the keeper.
Doncaster offered very little in terms of an attacking threat. Former Hamilton midfielder Ali Crawford saw his effort comfortably collected by Steve Arnold.
But Town were relentless going forward and they were soon rewarded with the second goal. Greg Docherty threaded a fine through ball towards Tyrese Campbell and the youngster made no mistake to beat Marosi with consummate ease.
Doncaster had an opportunity to pull a goal back before the break, but Steve Arnold stood up to the task to deny Mallik Wilks.
The visitors must have had a rollicking at half time, as they began the second period with much more purpose. Shrewsbury were penned in when John Marquis lost his composure at the vital moment to blaze wide from a close angle.
The proverbial game of two halves was in full swing as Doncaster continued to create chances. Leeds United loanee Mallik Wilks swivelled and fired into the grateful gloves of Steve Arnold.
Shrewsbury were severely struggling to get out of their own half; but Shaun Whalley did test Marosi with a 30-yard free-kick, but the Rovers keeper claimed.
Sam Ricketts will have undoubtedly breathed a huge sigh of relief moments later; as a melee inside the box somehow didn’t result in a Doncaster goal. Andy Butler tried to bundle the ball over the line and Town miraculously managed to keep it out.
Final chances fell to Kieran Sadlier, but the substitute was unable to halve the deficit; as Town held on for all three points.
The victory sees Shrewsbury rise to 17th – whilst Doncaster remain in 6th. Shrewsbury’s next League One assignment is a home game against AFC Wimbledon on Saturday – Doncaster welcome Charlton.
Attendance: 5,394 (357 away fans)
Team Line Ups:
Shrewsbury Town: (3-4-1-2)
15. Arnold, 13. Bolton, 22. Waterfall, 2. Williams, 7. Whalley (81), 28. Laurent, 42. Grant, 8. Docherty, 3. Haynes, 11. Campbell (64), 12. Okenabirhie (70)
Subs: 5. Sadler, 6. Beckles, 18. Gilliead (81), 20. Holloway, 27. Sears (70), 30. Charles-Cook, 50. Payne (64)
Subs Not Used: 5. Sadler, 6. Beckles, 20. Holloway, 30. Charles-Cook
Doncaster Rovers: (4-3-3)
13. Marosi, 44, Lewis, 31. Downing, 12. Anderson (28), 3. Andrew, 11. Crawford (79), 8. Whiteman, 10. Rowe, 7. Wilks, 9. Marquis, 18. Smith (45)
Subs: 6. Butler (28), 17. Blair, 19. May, 22. Sadlier (79), 26. Coppinger (45), 33. Jones, 38. Greaves
Subs Not Used: 17. Blair, 19. May, 33. Jones, 38. Greaves