Rovers 1-0 Northampton
Rovers recorded back to back wins at the Memorial Stadium this afternoon thanks to a goal from Tom Lockyer.
The youngster’s first senior goal for the club in the second minute of the game was all that separated the two sides.
Neither team had many chances in front of goal for the rest of the encounter, but it was a battling display from the home side.
Manager John Ward made one change to the side that beat York last weekend. Ellis Harrison returned to the starting XI in place of Alefe Santos. Matt Harrold and Eliot Richards both returned from injury to take up places on the bench.
Rovers got off to the best possible start, opening the scoring in the second minute of the game.
The ball was crossed in to the box by Lee Brown and found an unmarked Lockyer at the far post who headed home from close range.
Minutes later Rovers pushed forward again, and a cross in from Michael Smith was headed over from Brunt.
Steve Mildenhall produced a fantastic reaction save to push away a header from Clive Platt just after the ten minute mark.
Rovers were forced to make a change on 28 minutes, with Matt Harrold coming on to replace Ryan Brunt who was forced to leave the field after injuring his ankle.
Northampton had a penalty appeal waved away by the referee just before the break. The visitors believed that Matt Heath was tugged back inside the box, but the referee did not agree.
The visitors attempted to put Rovers under some pressure in the second half, but Mildenhall was able to deal with everything that came his way, including a corner from Chris Hackett that he punched away.
A good move from Dave Clarkson was blocked in the box for Rovers, before John-Joe O’Toole had an effort that went wide.
A shot from Roy O’Donovan went over the bar at the other end before Clarkson had a chance to double Rovers’ lead. The hard working striker shot into the side netting from a tight angle.
As the minutes ticked away Northampton were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area, But Hackett’s shot cannoned into the post and away to safety.
O’Donovan was then sent off in extra time after being awarded a second yellow card.
Bristol Rovers: Steve Mildenhall, Michael Smith, Tom Parkes, Mark McChrystal, Lee Brown, Ellis Harrison, Tom Lockyer, Ollie Norburn, John-Joe O’Toole, David Clarkson (Eliot Richards), Ryan Brunt (Matt Harrold)
Substitutes: Garry Kenneth, Matt Gill, Conor Gough, Alefe Santos, Mitch Harding
Northampton Town: Matt Duke, Kevin Amankwaah (Ivan Toney), Matt Heath, Lee Colins, Ben Tozer, Darren Carter, Ishmel Demontagnac (Jacob Blyth), Gary Deegan, Chris Hackett, Roy O'Donovan, Clive Platt.
Substitutes: Dean Snedker, Jonathan Hooper, Matt Harriott, Connor Roberts.