Stags’ reserves ran out 3-1 winners over Rotherham United reserves in a Central League Cup clash at Roundwood Sports Complex.
A mixed Mansfield lineup was selected for the game, including first team players Will Atkinson, Calum Butcher and Otis Khan.
First team defender David Mirfin also completed 45 minutes in the match - his first outing in over a year due to a knee injury.
Stags initially fell behind inside the opening five minutes of the game, courtesy of a well-taken finish by Millers’ forward Tyrone Lewthwaite.
Inside the opening 10 minutes, Mansfield were back on level terms, as Nyle Blake pulled the ball back to Butcher who struck low into the bottom corner from six yards.
The Stags turned on the style in the second half, and found themselves ahead in the early stages through Khan. The midfielder surged into the area and unleashed a powerful drive that proved too much for Rotherham goalkeeper Laurence Bilboe, who did get a hand to his effort.
Mansfield doubled their lead late on, once again through Butcher, who finished confidently after Paul Anderson’s pull-back.
Stags were forced into making a change between the posts during the match following an injury to Jake Kean in the second half, yet managed to keep the Millers at bay with Blake in goal.
Despite the win, the Stags will not progress to the knockout stage of the tournament, after finishing second in Group North Central. Only the winner of each group progresses to the semi-finals.
Senior professional development coach Richard Cooper spoke highly of the senior players’ performances – including that of Mirfin – and provided an update on Stags’ stopper Kean.
Speaking after the game, he said: “It was a good game for us. I think you have to give a lot of credit to the senior lads that dropped into the team today.
“They’ve had a massive period of training and games over Christmas. The lads covered a lot of distance and played some good football.
“Mirf [David Mirfin] has been training really hard with the under-21s and doing his gym work. That was his first 45 minutes for quite a while, so to get that 45 minutes, it was a great weight off his mind.
“I think he [Jake Kean] is okay. I think it was just a precaution [taking him off]. Because of the new rules, any bangs to the head, the medical team are straight on the pitch.
“He’s fully recovered now, so we’ll just have to keep an eye on him over the next 24 hours.
“We’ll see what numbers are back in the building over the next few days [ahead of next week’s Central League match against Notts County].
“We’ll see what happens over the weekend in terms of the under-18s game and the first team game. The team will be picked over the weekend.”