GOALS FROM Eoin Doyle and Nathan Delfouneso gave Bolton Wanderers the victory against Harrogate Town at Doncaster’s Keepmoat Stadium.
Doyle gave Wanderers and early lead with his first league goal for the club, before fellow striker Delfouneso doubled the lead inside the second-half.
Although Thomson pulled a goal back to half the hosts’ deficit, Wanderers held firm to pick up the three points from their travels.
Head Coach Ian Evatt made five changes from Wanderers’ previous outing against Newport County as they took on Harrogate Town for the very first meeting between these two teams.
Ryan Delaney, Harry Brockbank, Antoni Sarcevic, Andrew Tutte and Jamie Mascoll all came in for George Taft, Jak Hickman, Brandon Comley, Tom White and Liam Gordon.
A bright attacking start from Wanderers saw them win a corner inside two minutes after Gethin Jones’ cross was deflected behind.
Ali Crawford’s corner was cleared but not before Wanderers’ earned another immediately afterwards when Nathan Delfouneso’s cross was charged down.
At the other end, Jones was handily placed to clear off his own line after Ryan Fallowfield whipped in a cross that was met by the head off George Thomson.
Wanderers had a let off when Aaron Martin’s header off Fallowfield’s cross hit the foot of Billy Crellin’s right hand stick.
Delfouneso was unfortunate not to break the deadlock when he got on the end of Jones’ cross after the Welshman was found superbly by Crawford’s defence-splitting pass. The big striker’s well-struck effort cannoned off a defender to go behind for a corner.
From Crawford’s resulting corner, Doyle lost his marker to the steer the ball home for his first league goal in a Wanderers’ shirt.
Moments later and Doyle almost grabbed his second but a last ditch attempt by Dan Jones blocked the Irishman’s effort.
Tutte then had a shot charged down as Wanderers looked to capitalise on their opener.
Wanderers were on fire and looking to increase their lead to maintain the momentum they had gathered in the opening stages.
Doyle’s looped header went over and it seemed only a matter of time before Wanderers grabbed another.
Santos went on a rampaging run, taking the ball out of defence and charging 40 yards. His attempted pass to put Crawford on goal was miscued.
Crellin made an important save to palm away a close-range powerful drive from Calvin Miller as Harrogate proved to be an attacking threat.
With five minutes of the half remaining, Wanderers lost the services of Jones who limped off with what appeared to be a foot injury. Jak Hickman came on for the wing-back in a like-for-like swap.
Crawford’s free-kick over on the right hand side passed through a sea of players with Delaney only inches away from connecting at the far post.
No changes were made by either side during the break.
Hickman recovered well after he lost possession but it was at the expense of a corner which Crellin punched away.
Wanderers increased their lead on 57 minutes thanks to Delfouneso who was set up by a great ball from fellow front man Doyle. The striker kept his composure to loft the ball over Cracknell for a great finish.
Thomson pulled a goal back for the hosts four minutes later when he slotted the ball past Crellin after Wanderers failed to clear a cross from the right hand side.
Evatt made his second change with 20 minutes remaining with Gordon coming on for the impressive Mascoll.
Cracknell made hard work of a Sarcevic volley as the Wanderers captain looked to restore Wanderers’ two-goal advantage.
Wanderers’ third and final substitution came after 76 minutes with Comley replacing the hard working Tutte.
Harrogate: Belshaw, Fallowfield, Hall, Smith, Jones, Thomson, Falkingham, Kirby, Miller (Walker 69), Martin (Kiernan 56), Beck (Stead 76).
Unused Subs: Cracknell, Burrell, Kerry.
Bolton: Crellin, Jones (Hickman 42), Brockbank, Almeida Santos, Delaney, Mascoll (Gordon 72), Tutte (Comley 76), Sarcevic, Crawford, Delfouneso, Doyle.
Unused Subs: Taft, White, Darcy, Gnahoua.