Town 3 Tamworth 1GRIMSBY Town made it six points from two home games as they beat Tamworth at Blundell Park.
After a goalless first half where the only real moment of quality was a free kick from the returning Sam Hatton which crashed off the post, the Mariners produced a good performance after the break to earn their victory.
Shaun Pearson broke the deadlock before Ross Hannah’s penalty looked to have put the result beyond doubt.
Tamworth pulled one back through Andy Todd but substitute Liam Hearn hit a third for Town to ensure the win.
Two changes were made to the Town side after the 5-2 home win against Dartford, with Craig Disley and Hatton coming into the starting line-up.
Disley came into the side in place of the injured Richie Jones in midfield, while Hatton replaced Paul Bignot at right-back.
James McKeown started in goal, with Hatton, Pearson, Chris Doig and Alan Goodall forming the defence.
Scott Neilson, Disley, Scott Kerr and Patrick McLaughlin were the midfielders, with Lenell John-Lewis and Hannah again chosen as the front two.
The Grimsby subs were Aswad Thomas, Andy Cook, Hearn, Clayton McDonald and Alex Rodman.
Tamworth travelled in search of a second away victory in succession after an impressive win at Forest Green Rovers last time out.
The away side had the first chance when defender Tony Capaldi’s free kick found the head of Lareef Elford-Alliyu but he could not get any power on it and the ball went through to McKeown.
A foul on Neilson earned Jack Evans the first booking of the game on seven minutes but Goodall’s free kick was flicked out for a Town throw.
Good awareness from Hannah saw him put John-Lewis through down the right and he hit a long-range shot from wide of the penalty area that flew over the bar.
Neilson escaped a booking for a foul on the Tamworth right but the free kick came to nothing as Town cleared.
The away side had the ball in the net soon afterwards following a long throw by Capaldi but referee Darren Handley spotted an infringement and blew for a Grimsby free kick.
The first corner of the game went in favour of the hosts on 14 minutes but McLaughlin’s delivery was cleared by striker Richard Peniket.
A better chance for the Mariners came when John-Lewis was fouled on the edge of the penalty area. From it, they were inches away from taking the lead, as Hatton’s shot bounced back off the inside of the post.
Elford-Alliyu hit a volley well wide for Tamworth on 18 minutes and Mark Wright scuffed a shot through to McKeown two minutes later.
But Town were starting to get on top and a long ball through for Disley brought their next chance, with the skipper firing wide at the near post.
A good run by Elford-Alliyu saw him have a shot deflected wide for a corner just before the half-hour but Capaldi’s kick was missed by Peniket before Hatton put the ball out for a throw.
That proved to be the start of a promising spell for the visitors, who won another corner that led to Peniket heading over the bar after the ball was missed by McKeown.
At the other end, Disley was denied by an excellent defensive header from Capaldi as he looked to connectt with a McLaughlin cross after good work by John-Lewis to hold the ball up and find the winger.
Doig stepped in to deny Peniket at the expense of a corner soon afterwards, before a foul on Neilson brought a Town free kick on halfway, which led to Goodall’s ball to the 18-yard line being cleared.
A deflected shot by Evans gave Tamworth another corner seven minutes before the break but McLaughlin was there to head the ball clear at the near post.
Wright hit a weak shot straight at McKeown on 43 minutes, then a foul on John-Lewis gave McLaughlin a chance to swing the ball into the box from the free kick but again, nobody in black and white could capitalise in front of goal.
One added minute was played at the end of the half and with no further chances for either side, it remained goalless at the halfway point.
No changes were made before the restart and Disley had to scramble the ball away within a minute as Tamworth created the first opening of the half from a long throw.
The visitors then won a corner on the left but Evans’ delivery was easy for McKeown.
Hatton won a free kick when he was brought down midway inside the Tamworth half on 52 minutes but Hannah’s shot was poor, sailing wide of Cameron Belfield’s goal.
John-Lewis did well to win a corner three minutes later and from it, the Mariners took the lead. McLaughlin’s low delivery was not dealt with by the visiting defence and PEARSON was there to sweep the ball into the net from 12 yards.
Elford-Alliyu looked to reply for Tamworth but his low shot from 20 yards was comfortable for McKeown.
A foul on Hannah on the edge of the box gave the Mariners a free kick in an excellent position on the hour but Hatton’s powerful shot flew just over the bar.
Town were now on top and Hannah had a chance when he collected a through-ball and ran into the box but he could not get any power on his shot and it rolled through to Belford.
John-Lewis was the next to have a chance in front of goal but he never really had the ball under control and could only prod wide.
Wright hit a shot wide for the visitors after another long throw caused problems and Town struggled to clear their lines.
Tamworth boss Dale Belford made the first substitution soon afterwards, bringing Jordan Rose on in place of midfielder Lloyd Kerry.
The Mariners doubled their lead on 66 minutes, when Disley went down under a challenge inside the box and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the penalty spot. HANNAH stepped up and slammed the ball into the net as the keeper went the wrong way.
But Tamworth were not about to roll over and concede the three points and they halved the deficit with 17 minutes to go, as TODD found the net after the hosts failed to clear another long throw.
Cook replaced John-Lewis on 77 minutes and Hearn followed him onto the pitch soon afterwards, with Hannah making way.
Town restored their two-goal cushion with eight minutes to go and it was the second substitute who scored with his first touch. A pass from McLaughlin sent HEARN through on goal and although Belford got a strong hand to his shot, he could not stop the ball from rolling into the far corner of the net.
Thomas replaced Neilson with five minutes to go as the Mariners closed out a deserved victory.
They are next in action away to Aldershot on Saturday.