The Iron made it nine games unbeaten, including pre-season, with a hard-fought victory at Dales Lane.
Iron manager Jimmy Dean went for an unchanged line-up from Tuesday night’s 4-0 thrashing of Darlington as Scunthorpe travelled to Rushall for what was to be the first ever meeting between the two sides.
Jacob Butterfield got the game underway for the Iron and after a slow first five minutes, Scunthorpe winger Cameron Wilson carved out the first chance of the game as he skipped past two Rushall defenders on the edge of the area only to have the ball poked away from him before he could take the shot.
It was the home side that had the first shot of the tie, as a long throw from Alex Fletcher found the head of a Rushall man, but the effort sailed narrowly over the bar to goalkeeper Ross Fitzsimons' relief.
After a cagey start to the fixture, it was the Iron who gained the first foothold in the eleventh minute. Scunthorpe midfielder Alfie Beestin scored his second goal in as many games after finding himself in time and space just inside the Rushall area. He turned and sent a low effort straight towards West Brom loanee Brad Foster, but it proved too much for the young shotstopper as the ball trickled past him into the net to make it 1-0.
The Iron looked to build on the goal and having won the ball back from kick-off they broke forward at pace. Wilson received the ball from right-back Reagan Ogle and lifted his head before slotting summer signing Kian Scales through on goal, but his shot trickled just wide of the scampering Fosters’ far post.
The hosts were yet to really trouble Fitzsimons’ goal but that seemed to change as they began to apply a stint of pressure. Numerous Rushall crosses were all dealt with by the centre-back pairing Maxim Kouogon and Will Evans until one loose ball found its way to former Scunny midfielder Sam Mantom. He saw his well hit volley, which seemed to be arrowing into the bottom corner, denied by a crowd of bodies in the area.
With half time looming, Rushall continued to build on their period of dominance, and they really should have scored after Mantom worked an opportunity for the Pics as his cross was batted away by Fitzsimons. The goalkeeper's punch fell to the feet of a Rushall man in the area, but his shot was lashed over the bar from close range.
One final chance of the half was carved out by the Iron after a long ball forward bounced over Rushall’s back-line. Goalscorer Beestin latched onto it, but was hauled down just outside the area by the back tracking defender. Despite it being the denial of a goalscoring opportunity, only a yellow card was produced. The following free-kick was driven into the wall by striker Danny Whitehall signalling the end of the half.
The hosts kicked off the second half and it was the Pics who troubled first, as danger man Jake Gosling was slotted into the area, but his effort was stopped brilliantly by Fitzsimons at his near post.
The Iron made an immediate reply through Beestin. After some brilliant play by Whitehall to hold off his man, which allowed the ball run through to Beestin, he was clean through again. His volley was struck cleanly but palmed away by Foster. Straight after, the ball was recovered by Denton who plays a lovely one-two with Wilson, Denton found himself in the area his cross is struck low finding Whitehall whose effort is poked wide.
10 minutes into the second half the Iron troubled the Rushall backline again through Wilson on the right-hand side. He managed to whip in a delicious ball which was met by a glancing Whitehall header that stung the palms of Palmer, who made an impressive stop.
After end-to-end action with both ‘keepers being called upon, the Iron seemed to be regaining their foothold. Some patient build-up play saw Scales receive the ball on the edge of the area and his shot was struck magnificently but it went just wide of the goal frame.
With 20 minutes remaining, the Pics had their best chance of the fixture to draw level. Gibraltar international Daniel Waldron saw his powerful header incredibly saved by Fitzsimons to preserve the Scunthorpe lead.
Iron substitute Dion Sembie-Ferris was next to trouble Palmer as he was sent in behind the Rushall defence. The keeper was quick off his line, but brought down Sembie-Ferris which rang out cries for a penalty around the Dales Lane away end, but nothing was given and the ball went out for a corner. From the resulting corner, the ball somehow wasn’t bundled home by Evans from close range and the goal line scramble resolved with the ball in Palmer's gloves.
With five minutes of normal time remaining, the Iron doubled their lead through Whitehall who latched onto a ball forward by Evans before shrugging off his man and lobbing the onrushing Palmer.
Two minutes after making the score 2-0, the Iron added insult to Rushall’s injuries as Tyler Denton fired an incredible volley from the left channel to ensure that all three points returned to Glanford Park in what would be the Iron’s second consecutive away win for the first time since December 2020.
IRON: Fitzsimons, Ogle, Kouogun, Evans, Clunan (Shrimpton, 27), Beestin, Wilson (Sembie-Ferris, 67), Butterfield (Kelly, 73), Scales, Denton, Whitehall.
IRON SUBS: Boyce, Elliott.