Tom Bradshaw enhanced his claims for a place in Shrewsbury Town’s first-team with a hat-trick in an emphatic 4-1 Central League win over Morecambe.
After going close to snatching a last-gasp winner over Hartlepool last weekend, striker Bradshaw gave manager Graham Turner more food for thought with a quick-fire brace against a young Shrimps side yesterday.
Salop’s vastly more experienced starting line-up included five players featuring regularly in the first team recently.
They had too much power and guile for their opponents, once the Tywyn-raised youngster scored twice inside the first 10 minutes.
The frontman drove past one-time Town goalkeeper Andreas Arestidou as early as the third minute, after latching onto Aaron Wildig’s aerial pass and netted again six minutes later, via a sweet connection on Paul Parry’s cross.
Andrew Wright’s firm header reduced the arrears midway through the first-half for a Morecambe side under the guidance of ex-Town midfielder Stewart Drummond and former New Saints’ manafger Ken McKenna.
But it was a rare moment of concern, as recent recruit Stephen McGinn offered some classy touches in the middle of the park and Luke Summerfield sharpened his match fitness after his hernia surgery.
Aaron McGowan did well to get McGinn’s shot off the line, after the Scot moved onto a neat pass from Wildig. On the half-hour, Wildig blasted home a loose ball for the third goal.
And when former Wales international Parry switched wide right he set up the fourth goal soon after the restart, Wildig was on the end of it and laid off for Bradshaw to fire past Arestidou.
Morecambe were offered the chance of another consolation when McGinn tripped Jack Redshaw, but goalkeeper Joe Anyon stood firm to repel the youngster’s spot-kick.
Shrewsbury: Anyon, Woods, Mambo, Gayle, Westray, Summerfield, McGinn (Gwilliams), Hall, Wildig, Parry, Bradshaw. Subs not used: Holmes, Burton.