Back to winning ways for the Shakers
Bury moved to within four points of 3rd place Shrewsbury after a 1-0 win against Mansfield Town on Saturday afternoon at the One Call Stadium.
A solitary first half effort from Nathan Cameron was enough to seal the three points as the Shakers closed the gap on the automatic promotion places.
David Flitcroft made two changes to the side that lost against Oxford United last weekend with Jimmy McNulty coming in for the suspended Adam El-Abd and new loan signing Tom Eaves made his debut up front, replacing the injured Danny Rose.
The opening to the game was a fairly quiet one with neither team creating any noteworthy chances as they battled it out to gain a foothold on the game.
The deadlock was finally broken in the 20th minute as Nathan Cameron headed in his fourth goal of the season. Chris Hussey whipped a free kick into the box that was flicked on by Jimmy McNulty and Cameron applied the finish from close range, despite being under pressure by Ryan Tafazolli.
The Shakers had a chance to double their lead sixteen minutes later but were denied by the offside flag. Nicky Adams played an inch perfect cross to the back post for Tom Eaves to hammer home but, as he wheeled away to celebrate, the linesman’s flag was raised and the goal was ruled out for offside.
As the first half neared completion Jimmy McNulty made a good challenge in the area to prevent former Bury trialist Junior Brown getting an effort away at goal before Mansfield midfielder Jack Thomas picked up the first yellow card of the game for pulling back Andrew Tutte.
Two minutes of added time were indicated at the end of the first half and it was at that moment that Nick Pope was forced into his first real save of the game. Jack Thomas’ 30 yard effort spiralled into the air and bounced just before the Charlton loanee, who reacted well to tip the ball over the bar.
The second forty-five minutes had a similar start to the first with neither team troubling the other team’s goalkeeper in the opening twenty minutes or so.
Nick Pope was called into action in the 66th minute as he produced a smart save to deny winger Reggie Lambe. Vadaine Oliver backheeled for Lambe to latch onto and Pope made himself big before denying the former Toronto FC midfielder with his legs and the danger was cleared.
The away side reacted positively to the Mansfield chance and created one of their own ten minutes later. Nicky Adams burst forward from the halfway line before unleashing a powerful shot that Mansfield goalkeeper Lenny Pidgeley into a one handed save.
David Flitcroft introduced Hallam Hope to the game with seven minutes left as he replaced Tom Eaves for his first appearance since in nearly a month.
Bury were looking comfortable in the latter stages and were consistently keeping Mansfield away from Nick Pope's area.
Four minutes of added time were indicated at the end of the second half and the Shakers had one final chance to add another goal. Tom Soares played in Andrew Tutte but he lost his footing as he struck the ball and it went the wrong side of Lenny Pidgeley's post.
The game was brought to an end moments after the chance to secure Bury's fifth win in six games ahead of Tuesday's match away at York City.