(Photo: Action Images via Reuters)
By Alex Beard
Shrewsbury Town returned to the League One summit last night with a dominant 4-0 thrashing of Bristol Rovers at New Meadow.
The Football League’s only undefeated side managed to get back to winning ways after successive draws, with all four of the goals coming in the first half.
Strikes from Alex Rodman, Carlton Morris, Jon Nolan and Junior Brown saw Paul Hurst’s side to victory, with Wigan, who started the day atop the table, slipping up at struggling Gillingham.
The Latics are now two points behind the Shrews, after Sam Morsy’s 25 yard effort cancelled out Thomas Eaves’ header for Gills.
Bradford remain five points behind Paul Cook’s team in third, following their 1-1 draw with Oldham at the Northern Commercials Stadium.
Oldham’s caretaker manager Richie Wellens extended his side’s unbeaten run to five games, Eoin Doyle giving the visitors a share of the spoils after Paul Taylor’s long-range opener.
Blackburn squandered the opportunity for three points at home to bottom club Plymouth. Argyle actually went ahead when Graham Carey struck, but Bradley Dack’s finish just before half time gave Rovers a point.
AFC Wimbledon produced arguably the result of the night, stunning fourth place Rotherham with a 3-1 win at Kingsmeadow, a Lyle Taylor hat-trick making Joe Newell’s strike redundant.
Meanwhile, fifth place Charlton drew with sixth place Oxford United – Tarique Fosu-Henry putting the Addicks in front before Christian Ribeiro grabbed his first goal – and a point – for the U’s.
Blackpool moved level on points with Pep Clotet’s side with their 2-1 win over Bury at Bloomfield Road. Kelvin Mellor and Curtis Tilt struck either side of a Jermaine Beckford effort, Tilt registering his first goal for the Tangerines.
Peterborough are in eighth following their 1-1 draw at Southend, Marc-Antoine Fortune firing the Shrimpers in front before Jack Marriott bagged his tenth goal of the season for Posh.
Ninth place Fleetwood shared the spoils with 12th place Scunthorpe, Lee Novak and Jordy Hiwula on target for their respective side’s. And Doncaster put Portsmouth to the sword at the Keepmoat Stadium, with early goals from Liam Mandeville and Tommy Rowe cancelling out Mathieu Baudry’s own goal – Dion Donohue’s sending off putting paid to Pompey’s fightback.
Rochdale are out of the bottom four after their 2-2 draw with second bottom Northampton. Ian Henderson’s brace seemingly had Dale in charge, only for Ash Taylor and David Buchanan to draw the Cobblers level – with Rochdale ‘keeper Josh Lillis preventing a full-scale comeback when he saved John-Joe O’Toole’s penalty at the death.
Finally, MK Dons and Walsall drew 1-1 at Stadium mk, Chuks Aneke heading the hosts in front only for Tyler Roberts to secure a fourth straight draw for the Saddlers.
Full list of results:
AFC Wimbledon 3-1 Rotherham United
Blackburn Rovers 1-1 Plymouth Argyle
Blackpool 2-1 Bury
Bradford City 1-1 Oldham Athletic
Doncaster Rovers 2-1 Portsmouth
Gillingham 1-1 Wigan Athletic
Milton Keynes Dons 1-1 Walsall
Oxford United 1-1 Charlton Athletic
Rochdale 2-2 Northampton Town
Scunthorpe United 1-1 Fleetwood Town
Shrewsbury Town 4-0 Bristol Rovers
Southend United 1-1 Peterborough United