A wonderful 52nd minute header from Nicky Maynard, and a late bullet strike from Caolan Lavery fired the Shakers to another three points.
Micky Mellon’s Tranmere side left the Energy Check Stadium at Gigg Lane empty handed, despite a late consolation from Ritchie Sutton. Results elsewhere mean the Shakers remain just one place outside of the automatic promotion places.
Barnsley loanee Callum Styles was recalled to the starting eleven for Saturday’s tie against Tranmere Rovers. Will Aimson also found himself starting after he was an unused substitute last time out at Oldham Athletic.
The first good chance of the afternoon fell to Adam Thompson. He met Nicky Adams’ corner deep at the back post, however, he was unable to steer his effort on target.
Tranmere responded with a headed attempt of their own. A dead ball situation saw Ellis peel away at the back post, but his looping effort dropped onto the roof of Murphy’s goal.
The Shakers were looking threatening from corners. This time the ball carried all the way through to Stokes. The defender raised his leg to try and get the ball under control, but unfortunately, he could only poke the ball out of play for a goal-kick.
Nicky Maynard managed to turn his man, opening up the room to get a shot away. His strike was low from twenty yards out, curling towards the bottom corner. Davies got everything behind the effort, denying Maynard the opener.
Despite large spells of defending, Tranmere were creating chances themselves. The visitors drove down the right through Caprice. His delivery was to Norwood who couldn’t direct the ball on target, seeing the ball off his knee.
The deadlock was nearly broken on the half hour mark. Defender Chris Stokes carried the ball forward, forcing an opening. He struck the ball well, almost finding the top corner as his strike rose just above the upright to Davies’ left.
Ryan Lowe’s side were continuing to dominate possession as the half progressed. The visiting defence however, were resolute, having answers for everything the Shakers threw at them.
It took 38 minutes for Murphy to be called into serious action. Caprice was again pushing down the line, driving a dangerous ball into the box. A vital touch from the Bury ‘keeper saw the ball away from danger.
The visitors continued to get men behind the ball, frustrating the top scorers in Sky Bet League Two. Despite a strong defensive start, the visitors were forced into a change as defender and captain Stephen McNulty was unable to continue just before the break.
In the final seconds of the half, Murphy was there to rescue his side with a brilliant stop with his feet to deny Norwood, who looked destined to fire the visitors ahead.
HALF-TIME: Bury 0-0 Tranmere Rovers
The Shakers got off to a flying start in the second period, winning a string of corners. Unfortunately, a breakthrough wasn’t forthcoming as the visitors dealt with Adams’ dangerous deliveries.
Adams’ brilliant deliveries continued to pepper the Tranmere area, this time Maynard was on hand to direct a header into the top corner, leaving Davies hopeless in the Tranmere goal. The 32-year- old broke the deadlock with what was his ninth since joining the Shakers in just his 16th appearance.
The dangerous Adams looked to capitalise on a slip from Ridehalgh in his own half. The Bury Vice-Captain picked the ball up and carried it forward. His eventual cross wasn’t up to his usual standards and was blocked by Monthe.
All the chances for the visitors were falling to their number ten James Norwood. His best fell just after the hour mark. A ball in from Caprice found the forward free in the six-yard-box, however, his effort was high over Murphy’s bar, leaving the Tranmere faithful shocked that the scores weren’t levelled.
A switch of play from Norwood found Caprice in plenty of space for the visitors as they looked to force themselves back into the fixture. The full-back squared the ball to Jennings who dragged an effort wide of Murphy’s post as time was running out if Tranmere were to get something from the game.
The frustrations of the Tranmere players were beginning to show in the final 10 minutes with the Shakers drawing multiple fouls.
Fresh from a brace last time out, Caolan Lavery found himself on the scoresheet again. A precise counter attack from the Shakers saw Lavery take the ball on the edge of the area. He faked past one defender before rifling a low effort beyond Davies in the Tranmere goal.
A corner from the far side saw Ritchie Sutton head past Murphy in the final moments, but it was nothing more than a consolation as the Shakers saw the game out for a 2-1 victory against their fellow promotion chasers.
FULL-TIME: Bury 2-1 Tranmere Rovers
Bury: Murphy (GK), Stokes, Aimson, Thompson, Adams, Styles, Moore (62’ Lavery), McFadzean (76’ O’Connell), O’Shea, Danns (C), Maynard (85’ Telford)
Unused Subs: Hudson (GK), Miller, Dawson, Dagnall
Tranmere Rovers: Davies (GK), Ridehalgh, McNulty (C) (42’ Sutton), Monthe, Harris, Mullin, Norwood, Jennings, McCullough, Caprice (80’ Smith), Ellis
Unused Subs: George (GK), Buxton, Stockton, Gilmour, Bakayogo
Attendance: 4,748 with 1241 travelling to support Tranmere. Thanks for your outstanding support this afternoon!!