Scunthorpe United were 1-0 winners over National League North outfit Bradford (Park Avenue) on Tuesday evening, as Keith Hill’s side continued their preparations for the upcoming campaign.
Jack Moore-Billam’s second-half strike proved to be the only difference between the two sides, with the youngster registering his first goal of pre-season along the way.
Choosing to rest a whole host of first team players, four of the Iron’s Under-18 side started the game at the Horsfall Community Stadium, with Harvey Cribb, Ben Pike, Nat Wallace and Ty Sellars-Fleming given the nod from the start.
Jai Rowe was the first United player to trouble Bradford keeper, as the 20-year-old let loose from 40 yards, which in turn was easily gathered by George Sykes-Kenworthy.
Eddie Church then tested Marcus Dewhurst for the hosts first real piece of action, as he managed to smartly get on the end of a left-winged cross. The header rolled across to the left, before the Sheffield United loanee did well to deny him.
Harry Lewis then slipped in Cameron Wilson with 12 minutes played, as United enjoyed a strong start down the left flank. The ball in eventually found Sellars-Fleming, who almost benefitted from a double ricochet to get his first sighter on goal.
Cribb then showed some superb defensive acumen to thwart any further advances from Mark Bower’s side early on, as the youngster made a fine challenge over on the right before being fouled.
Fin Shrimpton was the next player to go close for United. The midfielder cleverly picked up the ball around 25 yards out, before firing his effort narrowly over the bar.
As the second half’s action rolled around, Park Avenue came forward, as Sam Fielding failed to connect following some neat build up play. Fielding again tested Dewhurst shortly after, as his low effort flashed just wide of the post.
Wilson sprung forward once again for Hill’s side as the game etched past the hour mark. The teenager was set free down the left channel before his wild shot sailed over the crossbar.
Nat Wallace then came forward down the left too as the Iron enjoyed a strong attacking seize. His cross found Lewis in the area, with his header comfortably gathered by Sykes-Kenworthy.
Rowe continued to keep the hosts at bay with just twenty minutes remaining, as he vitally flicked his header away following a strong delivery from the right. Bradford subsequently retained possession, before Ethan Young showed strong capabilities to clear any danger himself.
With just 18 minutes remaining however, United were ahead, as Moore-Billam’s 25-yard strike sailed into the bottom corner, to hand the Iron a somewhat deserved lead in West Yorkshire.
Minutes later, goal scorer Moore-Billam came forward again, as his forward pass found Wallace, before he himself was the next to force a save from Sykes-Kenworthy.
Substitute and fellow Under 18’s midfielder Josh Robertson then saw his header clawed away. The full-time whistle sounded shortly after, as Hill’s side continued their pre-season preparations with another victory under their belt.
IRON: Dewhurst; Rowe, Young, Pike, Lewis; Wilson, Moore-Billam, Shrimpton, Cribb, Wallace (Burden-Whittleton, 79); Sellars-Fleming (Robertson, 26).