Swindon Town advanced to the knockout stages of the Papa John's Trophy after dismantling Plymouth Argyle 3-1 at Home Park this evening.
It was a bright start to proceedings by a much-changed Reds outfit, and they landed their first blow of the night with 20 minutes played as Harry Parsons forced an own goal.
Kieran Agard quickly restored parity for the home side, but Town were impressive throughout and second-half goals from Jayden Mitchell-Lawson and Harry McKirdy made it three wins on the bounce.
There were a number of changes made with Jordan Lyden getting his first start of the season after recovering from injury, with Mathieu Baudry also starting and wearing the Captain's Armband for the Reds.
Players in the ilk of Jayden Mitchell-Lawson, Ryan East, Ricky Aguiar, Harry Parsons and Mohammad Dabre all got valuable minutes, and there were places on the bench for Academy players George Cowmeadow, Levi Francis, Harrison Minturn and Callum Winchcombe.
There was also a new but old face amongst the subs in the form of Steve Mildenhall, who served as backup to Lewis Ward with Jojo Wollacott still away on International Duty with Ghana.
There was a quiet start to proceedings with both teams content on spraying the ball about nicely and keeping possession.
It took until the 10 minute mark for the first chance of the game to arrive and it was the hosts who had it as Rhys Shirley headed home from a cross, only for the offside flag to cut short the home side's celebrations.
Things began to open up somewhat as Town began to apply some pressure with Ryan East forcing a smart stop from Callum Burton from distance, before Jordan Lyden played Harry Parsons through on goal with a superb ball, but the forward couldn't get his shot on target.
Town were playing some nice stuff and they were rewarded with 20 minutes played as Harry Parsons fizzed a cross across goal, which bounced off Plymouth defender Macaulay Gillesphey and into the back of the net to give them a lead.
However, it didn't take long for Plymouth to respond and they were soon level thanks to Kieran Agard, who stuck a leg out to stab home Gillesphey's cross.
Proceedings began to settle down a bit before Shirley nodded over from Adam Randell's cross, while Agard nearly doubled his tally after being played through on goal by Danny Mayor's sublime ball, but the striker's shot rolled inches wide of the post.
Plymouth were finishing the half on top and they came close to taking the lead as Mayor curled an effort towards goal from 30 yards out, but Ward produced a superb save to claw it away from goal.
Ward came out on top against Mayor on the stroke of half-time as he got down low to push away the attacker's well-hit strike, moments after he denied Joe Edwards, with the Pilgrims finishing on top.
HALF-TIME: PLYMOUTH ARGYLE 1-1 SWINDON TOWN
Town had a chance to get back ahead just after the restart after being awarded a free-kick just outside the area, but East could only send an effort over the bar.
Randell fired just over from distance before Akin Odimayo made a smart challenge to prevent a Plymouth counter-attack after a Town corner was dealt with by the hosts.
Aguiar made a great run just past the hour mark and was unlucky as his shot was tipped around the near post by Burton, before Town made a trio of subs as Ellis Iandolo, Harry McKirdy and George Cowmeadow replaced Akin Odimayo, Jordan Lyden and Rob Hunt respectively, with Cowmeadow making his Town debut.
Cowmeadow had an opportunity to make an instant impact with his first touch but his shot from inside the area was way over.
Town would take the lead in the final 15 minutes, though, and it came from some more brilliance from Ward who launched a rocket of a throw towards Mitchell-Lawson who used his speed to race into the box before sending a neat finish into the bottom corner.
Harry McKirdy nearly added to Town's lead late on as he tried his luck from an impossible angle, with his stunning strike thudding back off the post.
He had another try moments later as his scuffed shot was dealt with by Burton, but it proved to be third time lucky as McKirdy tapped home from Mitchell-Lawson's pass across goal to wrap up the win for the Reds advanced in the competition.
FINAL SCORE: PLYMOUTH ARGYLE 1-3 SWINDON TOWN
TEAMS AND STATS
PLYMOUTH ARGYLE - Burton; Gillesphey, Wilson, Edwards (C), Mayor (Will Jenkins-Davies 45), Agard (Jordon Garrick 65), Randell, Law, Camara, Tomlinson, Shirley (Ryan Hardie 79).
SUBS NOT USED - Cooper, Pursall, Issaka, Roberts.
SCORERS - Kieran Agard (24).
BOOKED - Ollie Tomlinson.
SWINDON TOWN - Ward; Odimayo (Ellis Iandolo 64), Crichlow, Baudry (C), Lyden (Harry McKirdy 64), Mitchell-Lawson, Hunt (George Cowmeadow 64), East, Aguiar, Parsons, Dabre.
SUBS NOT USED - Mildenhall, Francis, Minturn, Winchcombe.
SCORERS - Macaulay Gillesphey OG (19), Jayden Mitchell-Lawson (75).
Referee - Sam Allison.