Tranmere Rovers ended 2023 with a second consecutive away win, 2-0 at Harrogate Town.
After a goalless first half which the hosts controlled, Nigel Adkins’ side came out firing as Charlie Jolley opened the scoring on 55 minutes.
Captain Tom Davies scored his second goal in three games, nodding home from Regan Hendry’s corner to secure maximum points.
The win lifts Rovers to 17th, three points outside of the top half, while Harrogate fall to 14th.
The hosts controlled proceedings throughout a lot of the first half, and almost took the lead inside ten minutes as Josh March guided a Matty Foulds cross wide from close range.
For all of Harrogate’s possession, Rovers were resilient defensively. Regan Hendry raced back to deny Matty Daly as he looked to get a shot away in the box.
Luke McGee was on hand to keep Tranmere level in the opening 45. First, the ‘keeper held a close-range flick from March before palming away Daly’s curling shot.
His best save came in the form of a fingertip stop to deny Dean Cornelius’s fierce strike as the break neared, after several Rovers defenders grouped to block a Daly effort moments before.
Connor Wood, who has been impressive at left-back in recent weeks, limped off to be replaced by Liverpool loanee James Norris as the first period drew to a close with the sides all square.
Tranmere emerged for the second half with victory well in their sights despite having to soak up pressure for much of the opening exchanges. Kieron Morris went close with a powerful hit from range, which drifted wide.
However, Rovers were soon in front. A slick Rovers move started with Rob Apter darting into space and feeding Connor Jennings. The forward then squared for Jolley to fire home beneath the diving James Belshaw.
March tried an acrobatic effort which flew over McGee’s crossbar as the hosts hunted an equaliser. It was back to weathering the Harrogate storm temporarily, but Tranmere were as resilient as they had been all evening.
Then the visitors opened a two-goal cushion, as Davies headed home from a pinpoint Hendry corner. Rovers two-up with twenty to play.
Tranmere were having plenty of luck on the break with the Yorkshire side desperately searching for a way back into the game. Apter’s shot troubled Belshaw, but the Harrogate stopper parried it away from danger.
Matty Daly’s miss from close range was the last opportunity of note for the hosts, as Rovers saw out the game to secure all three points and back-to-back wins on the road.
HARROGATE TOWN: Belshaw, Thomson, Cornelius, Odoh (J. Daly 72’), M. Daly, A. O’Connor, Muldoon, Ramsay, Foulds, March (Folarin 63’), Gibson
SUBS NOT USED: Mooney, Burrell, Sutton, O’Boyle
TRANMERE ROVERS: McGee, L. O’Connor, Davies (C), Turnbull, Wood (J. Norris 44’), Apter (Hawkes 89’), Walker (McAlear 46’), Hendry, Morris, Jennings, Saunders (Jolley 46’)
SUBS NOT USED: Murphy, Yarney, Lewis