United made it three wins and three clean sheets in a row with a 2-0 win at MK Dons on Saturday.
Rory McArdle got off the mark after 20 minutes with a header, before Ivan Toney added to the scoring 15 minutes later with a headed effort that went in off the post as the Iron made it six matches unbeaten.
Scunthorpe named an unchanged side for the game, and early work from the Iron in the opening minute saw Toney knock down a McArdle ball forward following Ryan Yates’ ball. Duane Holmes charged forward and found Hakeeb Adelakun, but the ball ran out for a goal kick.
Then, on two minutes, there was some brilliant defending from the hosts as Toney played a reverse pass into the area for Holmes. He saw the run of Josh Morris in the area, but his square ball was well-defended and then cleared.
With eight minutes on the clock, Adelakun had the game’s first shot. Matt Gilks played to Conor Townsend on the left before a low cross-field ball was dummied by Adelakun to Jordan Clarke. The right-back then fed the winger, who drew the ‘keeper into a save from 20-yards.
Two minutes later, there was a corner to the Iron after another fast-paced move, this time down the left as Morris picked up the ball on halfway. He fed it to Townsend on the overlap, who saw his cross deflected. Nothing came from the set-piece though.
Scunthorpe had to be alert in the 17th minute, with good defending from Murray Wallace as he rose highest to divert an MK Dons free kick out of play for a corner. From the resultant set-piece, Gilks punched away from danger before the Iron cleared.
On 19 minutes, Toney and Morris both forced the Dons backline into a mistake, which saw Morris temporarily through and brought down on the edge of the box. There was a free-kick to the Iron, which Toney took and was goalbound before it took a deflection from the wall and went out for a corner.
From the subsequent set-play, Scunthorpe went ahead in the 20th minute. McArdle scored his first goal for the club, as he met Adelakun’s corner at the near post and glanced the ball across goal and into the net.
Eight minutes later, United won a free-kick on the edge of the area, which Morris took as he elected to shoot towards the near post. It was saved by the Dons goalkeeper though.
In the 31st minute, there was almost a second for the Iron. It was McArdle’s ball over the top that found Toney, with his first touch taking him into the area. His second saw him attempt to lift over the ‘keeper, but he was foiled.
Three minutes later, the Iron came close to a second as Clarke was denied superbly following Morris’ corner from close range. Toney picked up the ball, lashing an effort goalwards, which was cleared off the line.
United did add to their lead a minute later. Townsend fed the ball forward down the left to Morris, who broke the offside trap and squeezed in a cross. Toney met the ball, heading in off the post to double United’s lead.
As the two minutes of stoppage time were indicated at the end of the first half, Toney latched onto a ball from Holmes before teeing up Yates, who dragged an effort wide.
United had the first chance of the second period on 52 minutes, as they almost took advantage of two errors in the MK Dons defence. Firstly, the final defender missed the ball, with Toney through. Goalkeeper Sietsma came out but then cued his clearance to Holmes, who saw his effort go over the bar.
Four minutes later, there was a penalty shout for the Iron turned down as Morris was played in behind. He looked to have been brought down following a challenge from behind, but nothing was given.
With 63 minutes gone, there was defending from the hosts as Toney turned the ball around the corner for Holmes on halfway before Ojo received the ball. He teed up Townsend but saw his shot blocked.
Moments later, Holmes was denied by Sietsma at his near post after he side-stepped his man before firing an effort towards goal.
The first United change was made on 70 minutes, as Neal Bishop came on for Adelakun, and then it was followed by a second five minutes later as Toney was replaced by Lee Novak.
With a two-goal lead, Scunthorpe comfortably saw the game out during the closing stages. Chuks Aneke got under a header from 10 yards out following a left-winged cross, sending the ball over the top of the bar, with the only chance of note in the closing stages of normal time.
Tom Hopper came on for Morris in the 89th minute, and the hosts tried to get a consolation in stoppage time but Gilks was equal to two Muirhead efforts from distance.
United return to action on Tuesday night with a home game against play-off rivals Plymouth Argyle (7.45pm kick-off).
MK Dons: Sietsma, Williams, Upson, Cisse, Aneke, Golbourne, Ward, Tavernier (Nesbitt, 77), Tymon (Agard, 45), Brittain, Ugbo (Muirhead, 45).
Substitutes not used: Jones, Lewington, Wootton, McGrandles.
Scunthorpe United: Gilks, Clarke, Townsend, Wallace, Ojo, Toney (Novak, 75), Morris (Hopper, 89), Adelakun (Bishop, 70), Holmes, McArdle, Yates.
Substitutes not used: Watson, Lewis, Vermijl, Burgess.
Attendance: 9,578 (713 away).