Oldham Athletic 2-3 Wednesday
Boundary Park, Oldham
08/03/11 - 7.45pm
Wednesday bounced back from their weekend defeat against Plymouth by securing back-to-back away wins thanks to victory by the odd goal in five against Oldham Athletic.
Goals from Mark Beevers and Chris Sedgwick put the Owls ahead eaerly on before the Latics, who hadn't scored in their previous six games, hit back to level before the break through Filipe Morais and Dale Stephens.
Sedgwick put Gary Megson's men ahead again seven minutes after the restart with his second of the night, and that's the way it stayed as a stubborn Owls defence kept their hosts from scoring again.
Megson was looking for a response from his troops following their 4-2 home loss against basement side Plymouth at S6 on Saturday and he made two changes to his starting line-up for the trip across the Pennines.
Michael Morrison came in at right-back to replace the injured Richard Hinds, while James O'Connor came in for Liam Palmer, who also wasn't 100 per cent fit, in midfield.
And the Owls made the perfect start when Beevers fired them ahead after just three minutes.
Some good early pressure forced a corner and Gary Teale whipped in the set-piece for Beevers to power his header beyond Oldham stopper Ben Amos.
Teale has come in for some criticism of late by Wednesdayites, but he was central to Wednesday's second goal just ten minutes later.
Gary Madine held the ball up well and put Teale in, who in turn provided the cross which Sedgwick fired in to continue the Owls' superb start and leave the hosts shell-shocked.
The double strike was just the tonic for a Wednesday side low on confidence following recent outings.
But things weren't going all Wednesday's winner and Madine, so important in the second goal, had to leave the field with an injury just five minutes later, with Clinton Morrison coming on to replace him.
Worse was to follow when the hosts got firmly back into the contest on 22 minutes when Morais struck a long-range effort which flew past Owls stopper Nicky Weaver and nestled into the back of the net to get Oldham back into the game.
The goal lifted the Latics, who were second best until Morais' strike, and Wednesday were forced to defend more as Paul Dickov's men looked for a leveller.
Chances were few and far between though, and it was Wednesday who continued to look the more threatening, especially from set plays.
Centre-back Reda Johnson has been a big threat from set-pieces since his move to S6 in January and he almost regained Wednesday's two-goal cushion before the break but glanced his header from a Teale corner just wide.
The Owls deserved to take a lead into the interval but they were hit with a sucker-punch by the hosts in first-half stoppage time.
It was from another long-range effort, this time Stephens launching the strike which gave Weaver no chance to send the hosts in level and with the momentum at half-time.
Half-Time: Oldham 2-2 Wednesday
The second half continued to follow the entertaining and attacking nature of the first in the opening exchanges.
Wednesday looked lively, despite their late blow in the first half, and they were rewarded seven minutes after the restart when they regained the lead.
It was Sedgwick again, bagging a rare double, when Spurr's cross was flicked on by Johnson and the former Preston man was well-positioned to slam home from close range.
Sedgwick almost turned goalscorer to provider not long after when he swung over a cross which Michael Morrison could only head tamely at Amos.
Oldham upped the temp in search of another equaliser as the game wore on, but despite their increased possession of the ball, they created few chances.
The hosts' frustrations were mainly due to an improved, more stubborn, Wednesday defence that had come out in the second half, determined not to lose their lead again as they did in the first 45 minutes.
The Latics were being reduced to long-range efforts, and in Stephens they had a player seemingly capable of such an effort to mirror his first-half goal, but when he tried again he hit his shot straight at a team-mate.
Wednesday had seemingly shut up shop, confident in their ability to maintain their lead and failing to carve out too many chances to seal their victory at the other end.
The plan almost blew up in their faces though when Oldham missed a superb chance to level late on.
Kieran Lee somehow fired wide of goal from close range from a Ritchie Jones cross, to the relief of Weaver and the Owls defence.
It was the best effort of the half for the Latics, and the last, as the visitors clung on for a crucial three points.
Full-Time: Oldham 2-3 Wednesday