Accrington Stanley continued their pre-season preparations with a 4-0 victory at Marine.
After a goalless first half, Adam Morgan struck a brace to give Stanley a comfortable lead and late goals from Seamus Conneely and Billy Kee put the gloss on a fine win for the Reds.
In the early stages, Gerardo Bruna flighted a free-kick into the penalty area, where it was met by the outstretched Liam Goulding, who forced a smart save from the Marine goalkeeper. Marcus Carver’s cross from the rebound fell for an unnamed trialist, who hit the bar with his effort on the turn from 12 yards.
Academy product Kealan Steenson then hit the post, seeing his free-kick from 20 yards bend around the wall and clatter the outside of the post before flying away to safety.
On the stroke of half-time, Bruna almost embarrassed the home ‘keeper by shooting directly from a corner, though the stopper recovered well to tip the Argentine’s goal-bound effort onto the crossbar as Stanley hit the woodwork for the third time in the opening 45 minutes.
Manager John Coleman changed all 11 players at the break and the move paid dividends immediately as Morgan scored within a minute of the second half restarting, pouncing from close-range to net his first goal in the red shirt.
The striker had his second a couple of minutes later. Matt Crooks laid the groundwork with a superb solo run, slipping the ball to the former Liverpool man, who finished the move in style by curling into the top corner from the edge of the penalty area.
Crooks, on fire in pre-season, thought he had his fourth goal in as many games as he crashed a header into the top corner from a free-kick, but his effort was ruled out for offside, cutting short the celebrations of the Stanley Ultras behind the goal.
The Crooks-Morgan combination was fast becoming a fruitful one and Morgan came agonisingly close to a hat-trick after being set through on goal by the midfielder, but drilled his low effort off the inside of the post.
The lead was extended to three goals when Sean McConville’s low cross was met by Conneely, the Irishman’s cool, side-footed effort arcing across the goalkeeper and into the bottom corner.
In the last action of the game, Stanley made it 4-0 as Kee got in on the scoring action to round off a good workout for the Reds at the Marine Travel Arena.
Stanley first half: Mooney; Trialist, Pearson, Winnard, Goulding, Bruna; Trialist, Steenson, Pearson, McCartan; Hazeldine, Carver.
Stanley second half: Etheridge; Barry, Davies, Wright, Buxton; Mingoia, Crooks, Conneely, McConvile; Kee, Morgan.