Rovers Youth team joined Hull City on 31 points at the top of the table however Paul Stancliffe's side stay in second place due to an inferior goal difference.
A very cold but fine morning greeted the two teams. After an early corner Robbie Bryant, for the visitors, got in a strike from the left but put it wide of the far post. Rovers then settled down and began to dominate the play.
Harry Middleton’s shot was deflected for a corner from which Evan Finnegan fired wide, and in the 10th minute Alex Peterson shot over the bar from 25yards. Five minutes later Middleton played a quick 1-2 at a free kick but shot well wide from the return ball. Then, in the space of a couple of minutes Peterson put wide from the edge of the D, before a well-worked free kick from Finnegan ended with Peterson stabbing wide. Minutes later Chris Whincop fed Lewis Ferguson on the Rovers right however he couldn’t find the target.
In the 26th minute Peterson did have the ball in the back of the net only for it out for offside. Rovers keeper Aaron Busby was called into action just a minute later saving well from Sam Loughran after good work from the full-back Kerr. Just past the half hour and Middleton ended good build-up play by lifting the ball goal wards from 25 yards. His effort cannon back off of the bar and the defence were able to clear the ball out for a corner.
Rovers continued to enjoy the majority of the play but the half time score remained goal-less.
Rovers picked up where they left off from but as the second half went on play became much more even.
In the early minutes a Middleton shot on goal was deflected for a corner, a free kick from Finnegan was cleared and was followed by another free kick which produced a corner. Then, in the 54th minute a great cross from the left by Evan Finnegan was stabbed goal wards by the outstretched leg of Alex Peterson, that shot it hit Callum Bastock as he came out of goal and was cleared.
This seemed to spark Grimsby into life, with Jack Griffin getting in a strike in on goal from 25yards but Busby was equal to the task of saving it. Past the hour and Griffin from a similar distance hit his shot wide. Then Peterson, for the Rovers, shot over the bar from the edge of the penalty area. In the 68th minute, Sam Loughran, from an oblique angle on the Grimsby right, shot across Busby but the keeper managed to tip it against the far post and away for his defence to clear.
At the other end, Finnegan planted a free kick into the six-yard box where Bastock, under heavy pressure, punched away. Then Bryant, for Grimsby, cut inside from the right and a low shot was well held by Busby as Wattam closed in for any fumble. Josh Morral, for the visitors, tried his luck from 35yards however that effort went wide.
In the 78th minute Lewis Ferguson was put away down the right and after a good cross to the far post was headed back to the middle by Peterson Chris WHINCOP got to the ball first diving to head it into the net.
Grimsby tried hard to hit back but the Rovers held firm at the back for a hard earned win from a good game.
Teams – ROVERS – Aaron Busby; Mitchell Lund, Evan Finnegan, Harry Middleton ©, Jordan Binns, Scott Brown, Lewis Ferguson, Josh Meade, Alex Peterson, Chris Whincop, Billy Whitehouse Subs used – Callum Terrell for Whitehouse 86 mins;
Subs not used – Spencer Lund, Jack Steadman, Ben Askins, Callum Myers gk
Caution – Peterson 90+2 mins;
Grimsby Town – Callum Bastock; Blaize Kerr, Josh Morral, Jack Griffin, Ellis Humble, Ben Cuff ©, Lee Wattam, Lewis Smith, Sam Loughran, William Peers, Robbie Bryant Subs used – Paul Walker for Kerr 78 mins; Callum Robinson for Peers 86 mins; Tom Charlesworth for Griffin 86 mins; Subs not used – Hamish Falconer, Alex Leeds
Caution – Griffin 51 mins;