STAGS BEATEN BY IMPRESSIVE DONCASTER
Stagsnet Report now in Match Centre
Report from Press Association:
Rovers stormed to the top of the Third Division table after a thoroughly deserved victory in the promotion derby.
Two second half goals from Gregg Blundell cancelled out Mansfield's controversial penalty to stretch Doncaster's unbeaten run to four matches and inflict only Mansfield's second defeat of the season.
Blundell levelled in the 60th minute, nipping in to capitalise on Tony Vaughan's weak back header.
Seven minutes later the striker poached his 13th League goal of the season, latching onto a clever flick on from Leo Fortune-West before firing in from eight yards.
Battered Mansfield had just one chance to level, Liam Lawrence racing onto substitute Colin Larkin's pass before his close range drive was beaten away by Andy Warrington.
Rovers had dominated from the kick off cheered on by 2500 vociferous travelling fans.
In the fourth minute Fortune-West's header was well held by the diving Kevin Pilkington and then Mark Albrighton put a header narrowly over.
The Stags snatched a 15th minute lead against the run of play as home debutante Richard Pacquette tried to shield the ball on the edge of the area and Rovers full-back Tim Ryan was ruled to have handled the ball.
Keeper Warrington seemed to have saved Lawrence's spot kick, but the ball just squirmed over the line for the midfielder's ninth successful penalty of the season.
On the half hour a last gasp tackle from Rhys Day stopped Fortune-West from equalising after the big striker had robbed Dave Artell inside the area.
Rovers came even closer to an equaliser in the 35th minute when Albrighton clipped a drive against the bar after Paul Green's initial shot had been blocked.
Then the pacey Blundell, causing the home defence numerous problems with his direct running, squandered three clear chances to level before half time.
But after the break he finally found the target with devastating effect.
Latest | February 2004