Mansfield Town continued their unbeaten run in Sky Bet League Two but it was a quiet weekend for our sporting partners with no games for Hinckley RFC or Derby Ladies.
Mansfield Town extended their unbeaten run to eight matches this afternoon as striker Kane Hemmings’ first-half goal secured 1-0 victory over Stevenage at One Call Stadium and moved up to eighth position in Sky Bet League Two.
Stags were dominant in large spells and could have made the scoreline more emphatic following numerous good passages of play.
After a brilliant 1-0 victory away at Coventry City last week, Stags’ manager Steve Evans made only two changes to his team, welcoming back midfielder Jacob Mellis from suspension in place of winger Paul Anderson and replacing suspended top scorer Danny Rose with Jimmy Spencer.
Mansfield started well with winger CJ Hamilton cutting in from the right and striking an effort at Stevenage ‘keeper Joe Fryer inside the first two minutes.
Stevenage responded with what turned out to be their best chance of the afternoon in the third minute. Top scorer Matt Godden raced onto a Chris Whelpdale header but struck his effort just over the bar.
After getting on top of the visitors the opener arrived in the 23rd minute and it was the men in amber and blue who were celebrating. A ball into the area was completely missed by Fryer in the Stevenage goal, allowing Spencer to head the ball down to strike partner Kane Hemmings who had the simple task of rolling into an empty net.
Despite continuing to press The Stags couldn’t add to their lead before half-time and second half started slowly from both sides.
The game was really livening up just before the hour with referee Tom Nield at the centre of it all. Mansfield and Kane Hemmings thought they had their second in the 57th minute when the Oxford United loanee fired home after another mistake by Fryer but Nield bizarrely awarded the goal, before changing his mind and giving Boro a free-kick whilst Stags were busy celebrating.
Despite continuing to knock on the door that was the closest Mansfield came to doubling their lead but they comfortably held the visitors at arms length.
Though on the balance of play it could have been by a more comfortable margin, Kane Hemmings’ first-half goal was enough to give the Stags their second successive 1-0 victory.
Mansfield now sit 8th in the table, just two points off the play-off places and six from an automatic promotion place and seem to be hitting form with back-to-back clean sheets.