Wanderers secured Football League safety with a superb 3-0 win at Torquay United.
appearance for the club, while Dean Morgan (groin) and Paris Cowan-Hall (ankle) were not fit enough to travel.thGareth Ainsworth made one change to his side with Leon Johnson coming in for Max Kretzschmar. Aaron Pierre switched to left-back with Sam Wood moving further forward. The game marked Johnson’s 200
Blues started brightly in the sunshine and were rewarded in the fifth minute. Matt Bloomfield was picked out inside the area and the midfielder hooked the ball on to Wood, who acrobatically fired home at the second attempt to give the Chairboys the lead.
Danny Rowe did well to deflect a header over the bar as the hosts looked to respond, but from the resulting corner Krystian Pearce’ got up above his marker, however, his header was cleared off the line by that man Wood and then scrambled clear.
Johnson met Bloomfield’s 13th-minute free-kick, but he couldn’t get enough on his header and it flew wide.
Torquay were starting to see more of the ball, but Wanderers always looked a threat on the break and Wood’s half volley was charged down before keeper Martin Rice claimed.
Johnson blocked former Chairboy Elliot Benyon’s low strike, however, it was Blues who should have scored again in the 23rd minute.
Again Wood was heavily involved as his fine left-footed volley beat Rice but crashed back off the post and Steven Craig was unable to turn home the rebound with the goal gaping.
Wood did brilliantly to get in front of Benyon when it looked as though the striker would be left with a tap-in at the far post.
Stewart’s 29th-minute header from Pierre’s cross was straight at Rice and neither side really threatened until Blues extended their lead four minutes before the break.
McClure did superbly well to win the ball from Pearce inside the Torquay half before surging into the area and turning Anthony O’Connor, who hauled him down. Up stepped Craig who coolly sidefooted into the bottom left corner, sending Rice the wrong way.
As things stood at the break, Blues were out of the relegation zone on goal difference as Bristol Rovers trailed 1-0 at home to Mansfield Town.
Half-time: Torquay 0-2 Wanderers
Torquay made a double change at half-time with Jayden Stockley and Nathan Craig replacing Benyon and Jordan Chapell.
Blues started the second half well and Wood saw a powerful drive well blocked, before the hosts were reduced to 10 men in the 51st minute.
Craig did well to get the other side of O’Connor to reach Bloomfield’s lofted through ball and the defender bundled the striker over to pick up his second yellow card, after earlier being booked for the foul on McClure that led to the penalty.
Wanderers had the chance for a third in the 58th minute when Scowen led a quick counter, which saw Blues outnumber the Torquay defence, before slipping the ball to Wood, who saw a shot deflected behind.
Chairboys didn’t have too long for a third though as it came three minutes later. A ball over the top was misjudged by the Torquay defence and keeper Rice, and McClure clinically took advantage, lobbing home from just inside the area.
Neither side carried much of a goal threat for the next 20 minutes with the glorious sunshine starting to affect the pace of the game.
Craig was replaced by Junior Morias with five minutes remaining and less than 60 seconds McClure almost added a fourth but his ambitious 40-yard drive flew wide.
Ingram made his first save in the 88th minute when he comfortably claimed Stockley’s header, and Blues comfortably saw out time to cue wild celebrations in front of the excellent 929 Wanderers support.
Wanderers: Ingram, Rowe, Pierre, Stewart, Johnson, Bloomfield, Lewis (c), Scowen, Wood, McClure, Craig.
Subs: Horlock, McCoy, Arnold, Kretzschmar, Ainsworth, Kuffour, Morias.
Torquay: Rice, Tonge, Pearce, Lathrope, Mansell (c), Cameron, Chapell, Yeoman, Benyon, O’Connor, Cargill.
Subs: Poke, Nicholson, Stockley, Craig, Chaney, Stevens, Sullivan.
Attendance: 3,149 (929 Wycombe)