Despite another fine free kick from first team hopeful Lewis Collins against his home town side, a Mansfield Town U21s side lost 2-1 away to Grimsby Town in the Central League reserves fixture this afternoon.
Grimsby opened out a 2-0 lead through midfielder Sean McAllister and striker Scott Vernon before midfielder Lewis Collins curled home an excellent free kick, all the goals coming in the first half.
Mansfield Town boss Steve Evans elected not to send any first teamers to Grimsby, so U21s head coach Mike Whitlow made five changes to the side who were defeated by Hartlepool United last week.
Goalkeeper Xavier Sundby made way for Sam Wilson, while Teddy Bloor, debutant Bradley Peace-McDonald and Henri Wilder slotted in to the back four in place of Tom Slone, Mohammed Kamara and Charlie Shaw.
Up front, Tyler Blake came into the side as captain in place of brother Nyle, who dropped to the bench.
On 18 minutes two former Stags combined as Craig Disley rolled the ball into the feet of Adi Yussuf.
His shot was saved by keeper Sam Wilson, but McAllister reacted quickest to stroke the ball home on the rebound.
After hitting the bar and having an effort cleared off the line, the Mariners went 2-0 up on 29 minutes.
Brandon Comley crossed from the left to the near post where Vernon prodded the ball past Sam Wilson.
But on 32 minutes former Grimsby academy youngster Collins, who scored a stunning free-kick against Hartlepool in the Stags’ last match, stepped up and whipped another beauty under the dive of Andy Warrington and into the bottom corner.
Collins has been in the last two Stags first team squads and boss Evans believes he has a chance if he wants it enough.
STAGS: Wilson, Bloor, Wilder, Healey (Morgan 83), Peace-McDonald, Harrison, Danquah (C. Smith 74), Lewis Collins, T. Blake (C), Law, George (N. Blake 66). Subs not used: Sundby, Ratcliffe.
GRIMSBY: Warrington (Heath-Drury), Davies, Gowling (Rose), Boyce, Maxwell, Comley, Disley (C) (Berrett 46), McAllister (Hough), Yussuf (Sawyer), Vernon, Asante.