A stunning second-half goal from Luke O'Nien earned an impressive 1-0 win at Yeovil Town on Tuesday night.Wanderers had never won at Yeovil since reaching the Football League but always looked like ending that run, seeing a number of first-half chances denied.
However there was no stopping O'Nien, who stepped up to bend a sumptuous effort into the top corner three days after his 21st birthday to cap a memorable week for the young starlet.
Gareth Ainsworth had the rare luxury of being able to name an unchanged side, keeping faith with the same players who had earned a point from the weekend clash at AFC Wimbledon.
Birthday boy Garry Thompson was almost presented with a goalscoring chance inside 90 seconds but was denied by what looked to be the arm of Darren Ward as the defender struggled to deal with Sido Jombati’s long clearance, although nothing was given.
Wanderers’ first shot came on 12 minutes when Sam Wood won the ball in midfield and worked it to the right via Garry Thompson to Michael Harriman, whose low cross was met by Luke O’Nien but the midfielder attacked it with the wrong foot and saw his effort miss the target.
The visitors upped the pressure and could have broken the deadlock on 17 minutes when Ward again slipped up providing Thompson with a one-on-one opportunity, only for Chris Weale to deny him with his legs. From the resulting corner, Harry Cornick cleared Thompson’s header off the line and Sam Wood’s follow-up from 20 yards fizzed wide.
Then came a major talking point when Luke O’Nien slalomed superbly into the area and took the ball round the keeper only to be tripped by Weale with the goal at his mercy. Referee Darren Deadman was well behind play and gave nothing, with the Blues in disbelief that a penalty hadn’t been awarded.
Yeovil had barely threatened by almost had the lead on 36 minutes when Francois Zoko escaped from Aaron Pierre down the right and whipped in a cross which allowed Ryan Bird to volley goalwards, only to see Matt Ingram react superbly to tip it over the bar.
Momentum swiftly swung back to the other end where Matt Bloomfield drilled wide from 25 yards before another fine move down the right saw the ball laid into the path of Thompson by Sam Wood, but Weale reacted quickly to dash from his line and close down the shot.
There were no changes in personnel at the break but the hosts started brightly and saw Harry Cornick’s 25-yard shot saved by Ingram before the keeper got to a through-ball first with Ryan Bird ready to swoop.
Wycombe then regained their impetus and moved the ball around well inside the Glovers’ half but without really testing Weale, and Ainsworth turned to Aaron Amadi-Holloway in the hope of finding the opening goal, bringing him on for Garry Thompson just before the hour-mark.
Anthony Stewart headed wide from a corner and Sam Wood fizzed a shot at Weale from 40 yards before the breakthrough came with 20 minutes left on the clock. Matt Bloomfield collected the ball deep in Yeovil territory and played in Amadi-Holloway, who skipped past two challenges and laid it off to Luke O’Nien. The midfielder took a touch and then bent it superbly into the top corner, giving Weale no chance.
Spaces began to open up in the Yeovil defence for Wycombe to attempt to double their lead, although they were grateful to Matt Ingram for an important save at his near post as Wes Fogden raced into the box.
Sam Wood’s low piledriver was held by Weale as the game approached stoppage time, but hearts were in mouths when a Yeovil head got to a free-kick first only to see Aaron Pierre clear the ball off his own goal-line.
It was enough to secure the three points and stretch the Wanderers’ unbeaten run to five games ahead of the visit of Portsmouth on Saturday.
Wycombe: Ingram, McCarthy, Jombati, Stewart, Pierre, Harriman, O’Nien, Bloomfield, Wood, Hayes (Kretzschmar 72), Thompson (Amadi-Holloway 59).
Unused subs: Richardson, Rowe, Sellers, Banton.
Yeovil: Weale, Tozer, Smith, Lacey, Ward, Fogden, Roberts, Dolan (Dickson 59), Cornick, Zoko (Thomas 74), Bird (Jeffers 77).
Unused subs: Krysiak, Sokolik, Beck, Sheehan.
Referee: Darren Deadman
Attendance: 2,963 (154 from Wycombe)