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Wolves U21s hold their nerve to edge shootout at Morecambe – report

Morecambe 2 (Brewitt 25, Howard 81) Wolves 2 (Watt 24, Samuels 29)

Wolves Under-21s continued their unbeaten start to their Leasing.com Trophy campaign after beating Morecambe away on penalties following a 2-2 draw at the Globe Arena.

The shootout victory meant Rob Edwards’ youngsters earned an extra bonus point from their draw in the competition, to add to the 4-2 win at Carlisle last Tuesday, when Benny Ashley-Seal grabbed a hat-trick. They now top Group G on five points.

Wolves led at the break after goals from captain and impressive midfielder Elliot Watt and striker Austin Samuels sandwiching Tom Brewitt’s equaliser.

Michael Howard levelled for Morecambe, who featured eight changes from Saturday’s 2-2 draw at home to Keith Curle’s Northampton, after the interval to send the game into a shootout, which Wolves held their nerve to win 5-4.

And the match proved a great experience for Wolves sweeper Christian Marques, who at 16 got the chance to face 40-year-old veteran Kevin Ellison.

Watt put Wolves in the 24th minute with a free kick that curled around the defensive wall and went under goalkeeper Mark Halstead.

Almost straight from kick-off, though, Morecambe equalised when Brewitt fired home his first goal for the Shrimpers after Wolves goalkeeper Andreas Sondergaard made a superb diving save to his left to block a drive from former Molineux reserve left-sided player Jordan Cranston.

Wolves regained the lead in the 29th minute when striker Austin Samuels showed a clean pair of heels to outpace his marker before unleashing a low drive from just inside the box that gave Halstead no chance, after midfielder Terry Taylor beat Steven Old in the air.

The visitors went close again five minutes before half-time when Watt’s shot from the edge of the box forced a superb save from Halstead, who tipped the ball away for a corner, from which striker Benny Ashley-Seal diverted the ball over the bar.

Watt and Ashley-Seal combined again just after the break when the latter headed the former’s free kick over the woodwork from five yards out.

Morecambe went desperately close to equalising when a thunderous long-range drive from Cole Stockton rocked the crossbar, before they were denied an equaliser when Rhys Oates’s close range effort was ruled out for offside.

The Shrimpers got back on level terms with nine minutes to go when Michael Howard headed home after George Tanner’s shot hit the bar for his first goal for the club.

Samuels went close for Wolves when he fired inches wide but the game was destined to end in penalties.

In the shootout, Dion Sanderson, Tsun Dai, Ashley-Seal and Samuels were among Wolves’ scorers after Watt’s kick was saved by Halstead, while Cranston, Adam Buxton and Old netted for the Shrimps, before Sondegaard saved from Howard and substitute Carlos Mendes-Gomes fired over.

Morecambe (4-4-2): Halstead; Tanner, Lavelle, Old, Buxton; Cranston, Wildig, Brewitt (Howard 74), Ellison; Oates (O’Sullivan 78), Stockton (Mendes Gomes 86).

Unused subs: Roche, Jagne, Brownsword, Lynch.

Wolves (3-5-2): Sondergaard; Sanderson, Marques, Richards; Buur (Otasowie 78), Watt, Taylor (Tsun Dai 90), Perry, Thompson; Samuels, Ashley-Seal.

Unused subs: Pardington, Flavio, Nya, Hong Wan, Hanne.

Referee: Ross Joyce (North Yorkshire).

Attendance: 514 (62 Wolves fans).