Trialist Rory Fallon scored as Scunthorpe’s reserves were held to a 1-1 draw by Mansfield Town at Glanford Park on Tuesday afternoon.Stags striker Ollie Palmer levelled late on as he bundled the ball past Pat Weaver to ensure both sides went away with a share of the spoils.
United fielded a handful of first team players including Eddie Nolan, Jennison Myrie-Williams and Billy Kee as well as Nicky Featherstone and the aforementioned Fallon, who are both currently training with the club.
The rest of the side was made up of the club’s Academy players, with the hope of building on the 2-1 victory over Doncaster Rovers’ second string two weeks earlier and the Iron made a blistering start.
An early corner was swung in by Myrie-Williams and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot for holding which gave Scunthorpe the chance to take an immediate advantage. It was the former Port Vale man who stepped up but his left footed attempt went wide of goal.
The game then settled down slightly and Mansfield began to assert themselves into the match as Bob Taylor’s cross was headed towards goal by John Dempster but Weaver held on comfortably.
A cross from Nolan was met by Fallon but didn’t trouble Stags shot stopper Sascha Studer and good link up play later presented Kee with the chance to strike at goal from the edge of the box.
Studer made a smart save but it wasn’t long before he was picking the ball out of his net as Nolan’s accurate centre found Fallon unmarked in the area and he helped the ball on its way to the far corner, via the post, to put United ahead.
Nolan was then withdrawn from proceedings after a strong tackle and replaced by Taron Hare and Mansfield came within inches of an equalising goal almost staright after as Palmer made space for himself before unleashing a powerful striker that went just wide.
Palmer was proving to be a useful asset for the away side and again went close as he jinked his way past a couple of Iron tackles and eventually got a shot away, just inside the area but it was well saved down low by Weaver.
Featherstone then himself darted past a couple of opposition players before having a shot saved and Studer did well to push away a long range effort from Kee to keep the score line at 1-0 as the half came to an end.
Andrew Boyce was replaced by Jacob Hood at the beginning of the second period and Scunthorpe almost doubled their lead just five minutes into it as Myrie-Williams played a weighted pass through to Bateson who controlled, and hit his attempt just over the bar.
Stags midfielder Simon Heslop headed narrowly wide from a left wing cross as the visitors reminded United that they were still in the game but Kee collected a low cross minutes later before caressing a curling effort that didn’t quite have enough bend on it to find the far corner.
Noel Burdett came on for Bateson midway through the half in the Iron’s final change and Weaver then pulled off an excellent save as a cross was whipped in from the left and met by Heslop, whose powerful header was superbly tipped behind by the Hull-born custodian.
Kee stung the fingertips of Studer after controlling a flick on from Fallon but Mansfield found themselves an equaliser as the ever dangerous Palmer got his head onto a cross into the box and, following an initial save by Weaver, bundled the loose ball over the line to restore parity.
As the game entered the final ten minutes, New Zealander Fallon almost got another but his header from a Kee cross came back off the post and 1-1 was how things remained.
Iron team: Weaver, Nolan (Hare, 26), Boyce (Hood, 46), Howe (c), Mosanya, Bateson (Burdett, 67), Featherstone, Sutton, Myrie-Williams, Kee, Fallon.
Unused substitutes: Ledger, Wootton.
Mansfield team: Studer, Hendrie, Taylor, McGuire, Dempster (Koczalski, 53), Shires (Green, 81), Thomas (c), Heslop, Lambe, Fisher, Palmer.
Unused substitutes: Hampson, Fitzparick, Fletcher.