Grimsby Town fans were treated to a goal-fest at the Bradley Development Centre tonight as Russell Slade’s side ran out 11-3 winners over Grimsby Borough.
Town’s first half starting XI: Sam Ramsbottom; Zak Mills, Nathan Clarke, Danny Collins, Max Wright; Sam Kelly, James Berrett, Mitch Rose, Jamey Osborne; Sam Jones, Scott Vernon.
A Vernon hat-trick alongside braces from Jones and Harry Cardwell, as well as goals from Rose, Siriki Dembele, Luke Summerfield, and Adi Yussuf ensured Town got the victory despite the home side getting on the scoresheet three times.
The Mariners took the lead on two minutes as Jones fired into an open net after a defensive error, but the hosts were back on level terms five minutes later when Jack Debnam slotted the ball past Town trialist goalkeeper Ramsbottom.
But Town were back in front on 15 minutes as Vernon found the net with a header, and they got their two-goal cushion in the 25th minute via a penalty from Jones, which he won after being fouled in the box.
And Vernon got his brace on 29 minutes as he chested it down and volleyed it past Scott Drury, before Rose got the Mariners’ fifth with a bullet header just three minutes later.
Jones came close to grabbing his hat-trick in stunning fashion in the 34th minute, but his acrobatic overhead volley bounced off the bar and landed in Drury’s arms.
But it was Vernon who got the magic three on 44 minutes when Berrett did well to keep the ball in-play with a flick at the back-post, and the centre-forward latched onto the end of the pass by guiding it past Drury to make it 6-1 at half-time.
Town’s second half XI: Jacob Marsden; Ben Davies, Jack Keeble, Andrew Boyce, Josh Venney; Tom Bolarinwa, Sean McAllister, Summerfield, Dembele; Cardwell, Yussuf.
Slade’s men wasted no time in extending their lead after the break as Dembele tapped in from the six-yard box just two minutes in, and Summerfield made it 8-1 on 51 minutes with a spectacular finish on the edge of the box.
But Borough continued to show character as Debnam rounded trialist keeper Marsden to get his brace and make it 8-2 in the 54th minute.
New signing Dembele was arguably the stand-out performer for Town in the game. His quick feet and blistering pace ensured Slade’s men were constantly making chances and testing Borough’s defence in the second half.
And Town trialist striker Cardwell got in on the action on 73 minutes as he connected with Bolarinwa’s perfectly-timed cross to side-foot it home and finish off a great passage of play.
But the home side fought back instantly and got their third just one minute later, making it 9-3.
Town, though, got their tenth of the night in the 76th minute as Cardwell sealed his brace with a neat header into the top corner.
And Yussuf finally closed the scoring on 81 minutes when he latched onto Summerfield’s pass, before side-footing it home to make it 11-3.
The Mariners are back in action on Tuesday (7.30pm) as they travel to Stamford Town in the Lincs Senior Cup.