Gills extend unbeaten run to seven games.
Two quick-fire second-half goals from Josh Parker and Tom Eaves helped guide Gillingham to a 3-1 victory over Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park on Saturday afternoon.
Skipper Lee Martin had opened the scoring in the first half with a superb strike from the edge of the area, and although Scunthorpe looked incredibly strong in the early stages of the second period, in which they got an equaliser, they couldn’t respond as Gills stunned the home supporters with two goals in the space of five minutes.
Steve Lovell made one change to the side that beat Rochdale at Priestfield last weekend, with new signing Callum Reilly replacing the injured Scott Wagstaff in midfield.
Elliott List and Conor Wilkinson provided the attacking options from the subs bench with Connor Ogilvie and Darren Oldaker keeping them company.
Gillingham were the brighter side in the opening stages with Eaves heading narrowly wide following Garmston’s excellent cross from the left. The visitors got the ball into wide areas but saw a couple of crosses fail to reach their target.
Scunthorpe nearly got themselves in front against the run of play on 16 minutes. An excellent cross from Morris found Bishop unmarked inside the penalty area; with only Holy to beat Morris guided his headed over the bar from eight yards.
This sparked Scunthorpe into life and on 20 minutes Burgess nearly found a gap inside the far post from a corner-kick but Holy got across quickly to palm the ball away for another corner. Gills somehow survived with the keeper getting contact to the initial cross before Hessenthaler hacked away the loose ball following a couple of blocked shots.
The hosts paid for their missed opportunities on 25 minutes when a short pass from the back was intercepted by Reilly, he burst forward and played in Parker on the left side of the box, he came inside and spotted Martin in space who did brilliantly to finish from 18 yards and he gave Rory Watson absolutely no chance.
The keeper was alert later in the half to palm away Bradley Garmston’s shot, following a short free-kick from Lee Martin, before a Scunthorpe cross was flicked narrowly wide of the far post.
As the half came to a close the Iron threw more bodies forward to try and force an equaliser; however Gills put in some impressive blocks to ensure they went in ahead at the interval.
Scunthorpe had the first shot of the half when Hakeeb Adelakun forced a fairly routine save from Tomas Holy in the Gills goal, but the home supporters didn’t have much longer to wait for their equaliser.
On 52 minutes Morris, just outside the box on the left side, struck across Holy with a precise effort which found its way into the bottom right hand corner with the keeper at full stretch.
The midfielder nearly got a second five minutes later, he had time and space outside the box and tried to place a left footed shot into the bottom corner. Holy got fingertips on the effort before the ball struck the outside of the post. A couple of corners followed but a shot over the bar gave Gills time to reorganise.
Having weathered the storm Gills gradually began to assert some pressure themselves; a strike from Mark Byrne was diverted behind for a corner, and following a couple of crosses from Martin a brilliant ball was guided towards the back post and Parker snuck in behind Eaves who was unable to make contact and guided his header beyond Watson to silence the home fans.
And their silence was more noticeable when the Gills scored a third not long after. A through ball from Garmston sliced open the Scunthorpe defence and Eaves did brilliantly to guide the ball beyond the oncoming Rory Watson.
Scunthorpe nearly forced a tense finale when Toney’s header at the back post went agonisingly wide, but from that point on the hosts struggled to find a way through the Gills rear guard and the visiting defence were superb as they saw out the rest of the game to secure three excellent points.
Scunthorpe: Watson, Wallace, Ojo, Bishop (McGeehan 78), Hopper (Toney 62), Adelakun, Holmes, Goode, Morris, Burgess, Van Veen.
Unused subs: Kelsey, Townsend, Lewis, Novak, McArdle
Gills: Holy, O’Neill, Ehmer, Zakuani, Garmston (Ogilvie 87), Byrne, Hessenthaler, Reilly, Martin, Eaves (Wilkinson 78), Parker.
Unused subs: Nelson, Nugent, Lacey, Oldaker, List
Referee: Mr C Boyeson