Plymouth Argyle turned a narrow half-time advantage into a convincing 5-1 victory over Plymouth Parkway in their opening pre-season game.
An all-ticket, capacity restricted 900 crowd at Bolitho Park saw the Pilgrims take a 1-0 lead into the break.
That followed a goal from trialist Brendan Galloway, the former Everton and England under-21 international defender.
Argyle then scored two goals in the early stages of the second half, through a Ryan Hardie penalty and a Luke Jephcott header.
Panutche Camara made it 4-0 before former Pilgrims’ midfielder River Allen replied with a 77th minute spot kick.
Argyle apprentice Oscar Rutherford then completed the scoring in the closing minutes.
It was the first time in 186 days that the Green Army had been able to attend an Argyle game.
And they must have been pleased with the performance of the side, albeit with the start of the 2021/22 League One campaign still five weeks away.
Manager Ryan Lowe told Plymouth Live: “The scoreline is irrelevant really.
“It’s nice to score a few goals but it’s about minutes for the lads. A few of them played a lot more than expected.
“In saying that, we wanted to make sure we got them all suitable minutes so they are fitter for the next one.
“We know what Parkway are, it’s a great little test for us. The new stand was excellent, the facilities are different class.
“It was what was expected, but it was a good run out for the lads,” added the Pilgrims’ boss.
Argyle lined up in a 3-1-4-2 formation with Jordan Houghton in the midfield holding role behind the pair of Conor Grant and Danny Mayor.
Houghton was one of three of Lowe’s summer signings who started the game, plus trialist Galloway.
It was one of a series of corners taken by Houghton that Argyle opened the scoring in the 30th minute.
His cross was punched up into the air by Parkway ‘keeper Kyle Moore and as the ball dropped there was a crowd of players almost on the line trying to get to it first.
It was Galloway who got the decisive touch as the ball ended up in the net.
Galloway played on the left side of Argyle’s central defence and put in a composed display.
He showed good recovery speed, for example, when getting into position to block a shot from Mikey Williams behind for a corner shortly before half-time.
Argyle began the second period with the same set of players and soon took a firm grip on the game.
First, Hardie converted a 50th minute penalty after referee Lee Swabey ruled that Parkway left-back Ryan Lane had committed a foul.
Then, following another Houghton corner, Jephcott soared into the air and headed home in the 53rd minute.
The first three out of a total of eight Argyle substitutions were made by Lowe shortly afterwards.
Houghton was one of the trio of players to make way, replaced in his deep midfield role by apprentice Finley Craske.
It was 4-0 to Argyle in the 69th minute when Moore could not control a difficult back pass played towards him and he was tackled by Camara.
The Argyle midfielder won that battle and was left with the simple task of rolling the ball into the unguarded net.
Parkway replied with a penalty of their own in the 77th minute when Allen converted from the spot after he had been bundled over by Oscar Massey.
Massey was one of six Argyle apprentices who got second half run-outs.
Another of them was right wing-back Rutherford, who grabbed the visitors’ fifth goal in the 84th minute.
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He broke forward from inside his own half and then cut onto his left foot before curling the ball into the far corner of the net.
Argyle had intended to leave for a Spanish training camp after playing Parkway but that was cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Instead, they will stay in Plymouth ahead of their next pre-season action, which will see the squad split in two and sent to play games against Saltash United and Tavistock on Wednesday, July 14, with 6pm and 8pm kick-offs respectively.
ARGYLE: (3-1-4-2): Callum Burton; Ollie Tomlinson, Dan Scarr (Ethan Mitchell 65 mins), Brendan Galloway (Brandon Pursall 65 mins); Jordan Houghton (Finley Craske 55 mins); Joe Edwards (Oscar Rutherford 59 mins), Conor Grant (Panutche Camara 55 mins), Danny Mayor (Angel Waruih 55 mins), Ryan Law; Luke Jephcott (Oscar Massey 70 mins), Ryan Hardie (Rhys Shirley 63 mins).
PARKWAY (4-4-1-1): Kyle Moore; Harrison Davis, Rob Farkins, Aaron Bentley, Ryan Lane; Mikey Williams, Billy Palfrey, River Allen, Jack Crago; Shane Krac; Tom Bath. Substitutes (all used): Jordan Copp, Callum Hall, Mike Landricombe, Jordan Bentley, Craig Veal, Jack Rhead.
REFEREE: Lee Swabey
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