Stags come from behind to pick up three points.
Our development squad showed good strength and character as they came from behind to record a 2-1 victory away at Hallam F.C.
The hosts took the lead inside the first five minutes, but goals before half-time by Kyle Hempshall and David Jones put Mansfield in control.
Hallam mounted a valiant effort in the second half as they pressed hard to try and earn a share of the spoils, but it wasn’t to be as the Stags, marshalled by the excellent Corbin Shires, defended resolutely.
In challenging conditions on a sloping pitch, the hosts got off to the best possible start when a loose attempted header away by Hempshall was intercepted by a Hallam forward, whose bouncing 15-yard shot beat a stranded Sam Wilson.
The early goal served as a wake up call as Mansfield then dominated proceedings up until half-time, as they sought to get back into the game.
George Holloway, who was lively up front, saw a close-range header tipped over by the home ‘keeper on seven minutes, before three corners in quick succession all came to nothing.
Tino Chavundura whistled a shot across goal just after the quarter-hour mark, before the Stags finally got back on level terms when Rory Thomson’s excellent corner caused confusion and Hempshall finished with aplomb.
Despite a poor pitch, the Stags continued to knock the ball around well and create chances. Thomson, in particular, looked extremely lively and when he nut-megged an opponent to carve out a shooting angle, his swerving 30-yard was palmed away by the ‘keeper with Max McLeod unlucky not to convert the rebound.
Nevertheless, Mansfield soon completed the turnaround to make it 2-1, when Holloway broke away down the left flank and floated an inch-perfect cross towards the near-post, which allowed Jones to head powerfully into the net.
Holloway forced the ‘keeper into a routine save in the early stages of the second half, before Chavundura showed some good work to release Jones on the hour mark, but the striker was unable to bag his second goal of the game as he lifted a shot over the ‘keeper, but wide of the target.
Hallam, to their credit, then put the Stags under a period of sustained pressure for pretty much the remainder of the game, but struggled to carve out many clear-cut chances as Mansfield, marshalled by skipper-for-the-game Shires, defended resolutely to protect their lead.
Stags’ shot-stopper Wilson had to make one save, but otherwise clear-cut opening were few and far between, as the visitors protected their lead to record a well-earned three points.
Team: Wilson, Holmes, Shires (C), Hempshall (Blades), Thomson, Punter (Groves), Hutchinson (Gregory), Chavundura, McLeod, Jones, Holloway.