JAMES Jepson’s Rugby Town squad is starting to shape up nicely after his side put in two credible performances in warm-up games over the past week.
A 4-3 victory at Midland Football League club Quorn at the weekend was followed by a 2-1 defeat against a Coventry City squad containing a number of players with first team experience at a sweltering Butlin Road on Tuesday evening.
More than 600 spectators watched Valley far from disgraced against the League One outfit, with David Kolodynski’s early Town lead then overturned by first half strikes from the impressive Kyle Spence and George Thomas.
Rugby had raced to a 3-0 lead against Quorn last Saturday, with Aron Wint twice successful from the penalty spot and Jonathon Thorpe then on target in his first pre-season outing for the club.
The hosts had pulled one back before half-time, but the experienced Richard Lavery celebrated signing for Town by soon restoring the three-goal advantage after the break, only for defensive and goalkeeping lapses to allow the home side to score twice and set up a nervy finish.
Experienced ex-Kettering and Daventry central defender Jason Lee started both friendly games and has joined Lavery in signing forms for the club, whilst young goalkeeper Monty Parks and ex-Loughborough Dynamo defender Joe Pheasant have both now been released.
Ex-Northampton Town prospect Robbie Parsons was another to start both games, with the attack-minded player who featured for AFC Rushden & Diamonds towards the end of last season looking particularly lively in the Quorn match-up.
David Kolodynski featured for the first time against Coventry, after the club’s all-time leading senior goalscorer returned from an unsuccessful two match trial with National League Macclesfield, although two fellow forwards Jake Woolley and Alando Lewis continue to sit out the pre-season schedule through injury.
Rugby face two more warm-up games this coming week, with Shepshed Dynamo the opposition on the Butlin Road astro-pitch on Saturday (1pm) and then a trip to NPL Premier Sutton Coldfield next Tuesday.
Jepson will be hoping for another look at keeper Louis Connor in these upcoming games, after the young stopper once more donned a Town shirt against Coventry. Connor started 17 times for the club in the 2011-12 campaign, and he pulled out a number of decent stops to deny City on Tuesday evening.