Town's first pre-season game of the 2021/22 campaign ended in a narrow defeat to Huddersfield Town following Josh Koroma's 13th minute goal.It was a tightly contested fixture throughout the 90 minutes and depsite the defeat, Simon Weaver will have been pleased with the effort shown from his team.
The Gaffer named a side which included summer signings Mark Oxley, Rory McArdle, Alex Pattison and Danilo Orsii, while Championship side Huddersfield Town had the likes of Jonathan Hogg and Frazier Campbell in their starting XI.
It was the home side who started the half of the front foot and from the off, looked to exploit any space behind the Town back line.
Just three minutes in, Duane Holmes succeeded in this and audaciously tried to chip Mark Oxley from all of 20 yards out.
Town's usual pressing style was evident to see and it forced a corner 10 minutes into the contest which resulted in Town's first half-chance on goal. Connor Hall met the delivery and headed back across goal from the far post to find Aaron Martin, who looped his header over the bar.
The first goal soon followed but it was for Huddersfield. 13 minutes into the match, a ball over the top skipped past Town's right back and into the path of Koroma who managed to beat Oxley to the ball and then lift it over the onrushing keeper to score.
Despite going behind, the reaction to going behind was a good one and the vocal leadership from new signing McArdle was noticeable, with the defender organising corners and keeping the defensive line tight.
A couple of classic Josh Falkingham tackles entered the fray midway through the half and the return of the Hall diagonal ball saw Martin have a good chance on goal. Hall's long, raking pass went to Martin who took a great first touch to allow him to shoot across goal but unfortunately he couldn't find the finish to match.
By the half hour mark, Weaver's side was growing into the contest and the skipper, alongside Simon Power did well to win possession on the edge of the Huddersfield box before Falkingham slid a pass to the trialist on the left wing who dragged his effort just wide.
The final chance of the half did however come for the home side, where a ball played into the right channel left Campbell with time and space to pick out the spare man in the middle of the box. It looked like a simple tap in but for McArdle to position himself excellently to cut out the danger.
A host of changes were made by both sides for the second-half and Town saw the likes of George Thomson, Ryan Fallowfield, Will Smith and Mark Beck all enter the contest.
Joe Cracknell was in goal for the second-half and had been called upon twice in the opening five minutes to keep the deficit to just one. First, a close range reaction save denied former Premier League striker Jordan Rhodes and then Cracknell got down well to stop a headed effort at the far post.
To keep legs fresh and provide everyone with minutes, Lloyd Kerry and Jack Muldoon came into the action with 30 minutes left to play.
Kerry had a great chance to level the scores 10 minutes after coming when he picked up on a loose pass 25 yards out. Having seen the keeper off his line, Kerry looked to go over rather than around with his effort and although it was the right idea, the execution was not quite right.
Both sides were continuing to work hard as the game went on and the Terriers nearly doubled their lead just before the 80th minute when a Sorba Thomas free-kick was met by Rhodes who saw his strike cannon off the crossbar and away from the Town goal.
Huddersfield then began to dominate possession in the closing stages and put the Town defence under a spell of pressure. Blocks were put in by Fallowfield and Warren Burrell placed himself well to head away a dangerous cross which looked to be dropping to a man in a Huddersfield shirt.
The final chance of the afternoon came for Burrell who rose highest at Town corner and headed just wide of the far stick.
Town First Half XI: Oxley, Trialist, McArdle, Hall, Trialist, Power, Falkingham, Pattison, Trialist, Martin, Orsi
Town Second Half XI: Cracknell, Fallowfield, Smith, Burrell, Trialist, Thomson, Pattison (Kerry 58) , Trialist, Trialist, Beck, Orsi (Muldoon 58)
Huddersfield First half XI: Nicholls; Toffolo, Pearson, Sarr, Turton; Hogg, O'Brien, Brown; Koroma, Campbell, Holmes
Huddersfield Second half XI: Nicholls; Ruffels, Colwill, Crichlow, Edmonds-Green; Vallejo, Daly, High; Thomas, Rhodes, Ward
Goals: Koroma 13