Vernon and Thorpe score for reserves

COLCHESTER United's quest for promotion glory enjoyed another boost yesterday, with strikers Scott Vernon and Tony Thorpe both finding their form with goals for the Reserves.

By Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United's quest for promotion glory enjoyed another boost yesterday, with strikers Scott Vernon and Tony Thorpe both finding their form with goals for the Reserves.

Blackpool loanee Vernon and fellow front-runner Thorpe had scored for the Reserves in the previous week's success over Luton's second string, and they again hit the target in a 3-1 win over Oxford United Reserves yesterday afternoon.

Manager Phil Parkinson has been alternating his first-choice strikers in recent weeks. Leading scorer Chris Iwelumo has been the mainstay, but the likes of Thorpe, Vernon and Ipswich Town loanee Billy Clarke have all figured.


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Vernon broke the deadlock early on against the O's second string, and Thorpe then fired home from just inside the penalty area to put the U's 2-0 up early in the second period.

Oxford pulled a goal back, before young midfielder Robbie King headed home Stephen Opaka's cross for a late third goal.

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There was also good news surrounding midfielder Kem Izzet, who has missed the last five senior games with a recurring ankle problem. Izzet came through 90 minutes of action yesterday.

Left-back Stephen Hunt, who has only made two substitute appearances all season, enjoyed 45 minutes of football on his long awaited comeback from injury.

The U's have three games left, and they know that if they win all three, then they will be playing in the Championship next season.

United are at Bournemouth this Saturday, followed by a home match against Rotherham and a final day visit to Yeovil. Both Rotherham and Yeovil are battling against relegation.

Parkinson's men are currently second in the League One table, behind runaway leaders Southend.

They are one point clear of third-placed Brentford, who travel to Swindon on Saturday.

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