Stanley hit the woodwork twice but Reuben Reid’s goal gave league leaders Plymouth a 1-0 victory over the Reds.

Sean McConville saw two efforts crash against the crossbar while Plymouth keeper Luke McCormick was the star of the show in the first half.

But Reid’s sixth goal of the season in the 64th minute condemned Stanley to only their second league away loss of the season – and they deserved at least at draw from the clash at Home Park.

The Reds suffered a setback in the warm-up when they lost left back Adam Buxton, who had started the last eight games, to an injury.

Joe Wright came in as Stanley reshuffled their backline and Plymouth showed their threat early on when Jake Jervis charged down the wing and fired in a shot which Jason Mooney did well to push away.

However from then on it was down to the woodwork and McCormick to stop Stanley taking the lead at half-time.

Josh Windass raced clean through and was lining up to shoot before Curtis Nelson nicked the ball off his toes and then Matt Crooks was again in a great position but McCormick denied him.

Mooney then did superbly to keep out a Josh Simpson blast on 11 minutes but, for the rest of the first half, the Stanley keeper didn’t have a lot to do.

Winger McConville got the ball to the left of the area in the 29th minute and he smashed it goalwards but it hit the crossbar and was frantically cleared.

And McConville had another chance minutes later but this time McCormick did well to push away his effort.

Then it was Piero Mingoia’s turn to test the Pilgrims keeper – he got into good positions twice – but again McCormick kept the Reds out as they just couldn’t find a way past him before the break.

Plymouth made two substitutions at half-time as Derek Adams looked to change the fortunes of his side and sub Graham Carey was lively for the Pilgrims.

He had a couple of efforts, one which whisked inches past Mooney’s post, and then Plymouth took the lead.

Dean Winnard gave away a free kick for a foul on Gregg Wylde, Carey fired the ball in and it flicked off Nelson’s head, looped up, and Reid volleyed the ball into the top corner of the net on 64 minutes.

Stanley surged forward looking for the equaliser and it was agony for McConville again as he rifled in a fierce shot from 20 yards and again it hit the woodwork.

Windass, in a great position, fired over the bar on 81 minutes and, with eight minutes left, John Coleman made a double substitution with Terry Gornell and Kaid Mohamed entering the fray.

But they still couldn’t get past McCormick who turned around a McConville goalbound effort which he saw late in the 85th minute and then sub Gornell clipped an effort just wide of the far post as time ran out for Stanley.

Another downside for the Reds was a booking for Matt Crooks who will now miss the next game, having picked up five bookings this season.