Wycombe Wanderers soared to the summit of League 1 with a stunning 3-1 victory over Lincoln City at Adams Park, thanks to a hat-trick from Joe Jacobson.
The left-back scored from a free-kick and a corner before the interval, but the Imps bit back when John Akinde tapped home from close range while two players lay stricken with head injuries on the six-yard line.
Wanderers restored their two-goal advantage with another incredible goal straight from a corner from Jacobson, while Ryan Allsop made a stunning save from Tyler Walker in stoppage time to help ensure the hosts secured all three points.
Wanderers looked to start on the front against a City side who’ve been feeling the effects of a busy schedule with league and cup games coming thick and fast, and Matt Bloomfield capitalised by drawing a foul on five minutes which led to the opening goal. Joe Jacobson netted in this same fixture two seasons ago, and repeated the feat with a sublime curling effort which left keeper Josh Vickers standing motionless.
With their tails up, Wycombe looked to stretch their advantage and Jacobson let fly with another long-range sizzler which was blocked to safety after Bloomfield and Scott Kashket embarked on a counter-attack from deep.
Lincoln carved out a couple of decent openings with some patient build-up play, but Wanderers were equal to it, while Jacobson again went close when his free-kick from out wide nearly crept in at the front post, but Vickers recovered in time.
Then, Samuel fired just wide of the far post after Bloomfield broke through the middle, and David Wheeler looped a header over the bar from another Jacobson cross.
The second goal came soon after, and there was plenty of debate about who should be credited with it. Jacobson’s corner tricked everyone and headed straight for the near post, connecting at some point with either the knee of Michael Bostwick or Darius Charles, but replays suggest it’s JJ’s goal – his second of the game and the third time he’s netted direct from a corner.
Anthony Stewart headed over from yet another corner from the left-back before the half-time whistle sounded, and Lincoln made a change at the break, throwing ex-Wycombe loanee John Akinde into the attack as midfielder Michael O’Connor made way.
City improved after the interval, and it needed a heroic header from Jack Grimmer to clear the danger as Bruno Andrade lurked at the back post from a right-wing cross, but controversy followed from the resulting set piece as Lincoln pulled one back.
Andrade and Matt Bloomfield both went down on the six-yard line with head injuries, but referee Sarginson inexplicably allowed play to continue, with Wanderers’ defence caught static as Akinde tapped home a cross from close range. Ryan Allsop was booked for dissent as the hosts stated their case.
It took a lengthy delay for medics to help Bloomfield from the pitch on a stretcher, and Nnamdi Ofoborh took his place for his Chairboys debut when play eventually got back underway.
Driven on by a sense of injustice, the Blues kicked on, and Nick Freeman fired one into the side netting before Adebayo Akinfenwa took the place of Kashket in attack.
The game opened up, and after Freeman forced a low save from Vickers, Andrade curled one narrowly over the top when finding space on the edge of the box.
But back came Wycombe, and after Akinfenwa’s shot was blocked en route to the net by Jason Shackell, Freeman’s cross-shot missed the far post by inches.
Lincoln brought on Harry Anderson for Jack Payne but the new arrival had been on the pitch for a matter of seconds when the third goal came, again from the foot of Jacobson, and again direct from a corner, with Vickers grasping at thin air.
With the hat-trick under his belt, it was time for the Blues to defend their lead, and it needed a superb reflex save from Allsop to deny Anderson in the first of 13 minutes’ stoppage time, shortly after Akinfenwa saw a shot tipped away for a corner.
Freeman hit the bar with a sumptuous curling effort before Lincoln introduced Ellis Chapman for Bruno Andrade, but Wycombe’s lead was safe, and Rolando Aarons came off the bench and danced through the Imp’s defence before being hacked down, with Jacobson’s free-kick hitting the wall.
Then came the full-time whistle, as Wycombe celebrated moving to the top of League 1 for the first time in their 132-year history.