POPULAR Efe Sodje looked on as his brother Akpo scored a spectacular clinching goal for Town in last night's 2-0 win at Ossett Town.
The 22-year-old pounced after 66 minutes with a crunching left-foot volley from just outside the box to delight around 1,000 Town fans in a bumper Ingfield attendance.
His fearsome finish - ripped past Ossett goalkeeper John Hood from a Nat Brown flick-on - added to a fine opportunist finish from big 19-year-old defender John McCombe in the 35th minute.
McCombe - who has caught the eye of manager Peter Jackson in pre-season training - stayed up following a free-kick and was on hand to supply a smart finish when the ball was poked past a line of static defenders.
After a Rich Tracey header dropped just over the bar in the fifth minute, Town were never seriously troubled by Steve Richards' UniBond Premier Division side on a hard, bumpy pitch and Phil Senior didn't have a shot to save.
"Considering the surface, some of our passing at times was good and it's another 90 minutes of fitness work which the lads have come through without injuries," said Jackson, who watched alongside coach Terry Yorath while Martyn Booty took charge of the team.
"I thought the attitude was good and there were obviously quite a few in the crowd who had come to watch our trialists, particularly Sodje, who rewarded them with a goal.
"Akpo worked hard in the game and took his goal well, while Steve Haslam never really extended himself because of the nature of the game.
"Steve hasn't played for a while, though, so I thought it was a good run-out."
Jackson fielded a team including a sprinkling of first team regulars with the rest being Reserves and trialists, while Ossett used a string of unnamed substitutes in the second half which did little to help their flow or that of the match.
"I was pleased with our young lads and it was good for John McCombe to get a goal because he has been doing well," added Jackson.
"Joe Walsh had a good game in midfield, Adnan Ahmed is improving all the time and Michael Collins looks like he is going to be a very good player but, to be fair, I have been happy with all our younger players since we returned for pre-season training."
While Sodje's first shot at goal went sailing over the top stand at Ingfield and into the bus station beyond, he showed strength and pace at times and, at 6ft 3in, is certainly capable of being a handful on his day.
The former QPR man - he was two years a professional at Loftus Road - saw little of the ball in the first half, although he did tee up Collins for a rasping drive which curled just a yard wide.
McCombe's goal was the highlight of the first half.
In the second, the game became increasingly scrappy despite Sodje going close with a dipping shot and skipper Steve Yates having a header saved just under the bar.
Haslam was moved into midfield from his sweeper position near the end, with Lee Fowler also asked to push further forward, and Town's best chance fell to Walsh, who failed to make proper contact with a volley at the back post.
Ossett Town - Hood, Hudson, Brown, Price, Daly, Bolder, Callery, Briggs, Tracey, Davidson, Jackson. Subs: Numerous unnamed players were used.
Town - Senior, Ahmed, Lloyd, Fowler, McCombe, Yates, Walsh, Haslam, Collins (Hardy 77mins), Brown, A Sodje (Young 77mins).
Next match - Town visit Bradford Park Avenue at the Horsfall Stadium, Wibsey, tomorrow night (7.30)