Tom Eaves hit a superb second-half hat-trick as Shrewsbury Town earned a vital victory over Crawley to move seven points clear of the relegation zone.

After opening the scoring with a fine 25-yard strike, Eaves then ran from the halfway line to coolly chip the ball over keeper Paul Jones to make it 2-0.

Town missed a penalty when Matt Richards blazed the ball over after Joe Walsh had tugged Yado Mambo's shirt.

But another powerful long-range Eaves strike secured his treble late on.

Crawley had the better of the first half and could easily have led, Jamie Proctor looping a header just over after being picked out by Mustapha Dumbuya's cross. But they were blown away in the second period.

VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Shrewsbury Town manager Graham Turner told BBC Radio Shropshire:

"We find ourselves in a reasonable position - but there are still a few points to get to be sure. We should have had a better return on our recent form, so today has touched the anxiety amongst the players.

"I'd like to say it was a terrific performance and the scoreline reflected that - but I can't say it was. We were lucky and made the most of our chances. They've missed some chances and it could have been very different.

"Tom Eaves has done what he is in the side for. He does strike the ball well and six goals in eight games is incredible for us.

"Matt Richards has been a reliable penalty taker for a number of seasons. It was disappointing to see it go over the bar. I am not going to fall out with him for missing it."

Crawley Town manager Richie Barker told BBC Sussex:

"It's another game we've come away from having dominated possession, played the better football and created the most chances and ended up getting beat so I think it's a learning curve.

"We looked like a good team today but looking like a good team and turning it into a good team are two different things and we need to be careful.

"We should be doing better with the chances we had.

"It's going to be tough with back-to-back home games against MK Dons and Sheffield United, but whether it's the play-offs or not I think we've done extremely well."

Lineup, Bookings (2) & Substitutions (6)

Shrewsbury

  • 01 Weale
  • 03 Jacobson
  • 18 Goldson
  • 23 Mambo
  • 26 Hurst
  • 04 Summerfield
  • 08 Richards Booked
  • 11 Taylor (Wright - 89' )
  • 15 McGinn (Parry - 73' )
  • 10 Morgan (Asante - 84' )
  • 24 Eaves

Substitutes

  • 25 Anyon
  • 06 Purdie
  • 07 Wright
  • 17 Parry
  • 19 McAllister
  • 20 Wildig
  • 27 Asante

Crawley Town

  • 01 P Jones
  • 02 Dumbuya (Torres - 62' )
  • 03 Sadler
  • 04 Connolly
  • 12 Walsh
  • 07 Clarke Booked
  • 10 Sparrow (Simpson - 31' )
  • 15 Bulman
  • 16 Adams
  • 14 Proctor (O'Brien - 74' )
  • 28 Hayes

Substitutes

  • 25 Maddison
  • 06 Essam
  • 13 Hunt
  • 08 Torres
  • 11 Simpson
  • 21 M Jones
  • 19 O'Brien
Ref: Linington
Att: 5,196

Match Stats

Shots

10 21

On target

6 8

Corners

4 11

Fouls

10 16

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +4:04 Full time

Full Time The referee signals the end of the game.

90:00 +3:07

Nicky Adams takes a shot. Save made by Chris Weale.

90:00 +1:10

Corner from the right by-line taken by Mat Sadler, Connor Goldson makes a clearance. Corner taken right-footed by Nicky Adams from the left by-line to the near post, clearance made by Tom Eaves.

88:18

Direct free kick taken by Joe Jacobson. Foul by Akwasi Asante on Mark Connolly, free kick awarded. Paul Jones takes the free kick.

88:18 Substitution

Substitution Mark Wright on for Jon Taylor.

88:18

Jon Taylor fouled by Nicky Adams, the ref awards a free kick.

87:02

Paul Hayes fouled by Yado Mambo, the ref awards a free kick. Dannie Bulman restarts play with the free kick.

86:43

Effort from outside the penalty box by Akwasi Asante goes wide left of the target.

84:45 Goal scored

Goal! - Tom Eaves - Shrewsbury 3 - 0 Crawley Tom Eaves finds the back of the net with a goal from just outside the area to the top right corner of the goal. Shrewsbury 3-0 Crawley Town.

83:35

Free kick taken by Joe Jacobson.

83:35 Substitution

Substitution Akwasi Asante on for Marvin Morgan.

83:35

Foul by Paul Hayes on Joe Jacobson, free kick awarded.

79:44 Penalty

Power penalty missed by Matthew Richards.

79:44

Joe Walsh gives away a Penalty for an unfair challenge on Yado Mambo.

79:12

Dannie Bulman gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tom Eaves. Free kick taken by Matthew Richards.

77:17

Aiden O'Brien produces a right-footed shot from close in which goes wide of the right-hand upright.

74:36

Joe Jacobson takes the free kick. Jon Taylor takes the inswinging corner, Foul by Yado Mambo on Paul Jones, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Dannie Bulman. Effort on goal by Nicky Adams from deep inside the penalty area misses to the right of the target.

74:36 Booking

Booking Booking for Billy Clarke for unsporting behaviour.

74:27

Billy Clarke gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Marvin Morgan.

73:55 Substitution

Substitution Aiden O'Brien is brought on as a substitute for Jamie Proctor.

72:16

Matthew Richards takes a outswinging corner to the near post.

72:16 Substitution

Substitution Stephen McGinn goes off and Paul Parry comes on.

70:50

Mat Sadler takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Marvin Morgan.

69:35

Nicky Adams decides to take the corner short. Inswinging corner taken by Mat Sadler, clearance made by Tom Eaves.

69:18

Dannie Bulman concedes a free kick for a foul on Stephen McGinn. Luke Summerfield takes the direct free kick.

67:33

Nicky Adams takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line played to the near post, Mark Connolly takes a shot. Chris Weale makes a save. Corner taken by Mat Sadler from the right by-line, Paul Hayes produces a headed effort from deep inside the six-yard box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.

67:18

Nicky Adams takes a shot. Blocked by Connor Goldson.

66:01 Goal scored

Goal! - Tom Eaves - Shrewsbury 2 - 0 Crawley Tom Eaves finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Shrewsbury 2-0 Crawley Town.

64:32

Billy Clarke gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Yado Mambo. Free kick taken by Chris Weale.

63:34

Foul by Joe Walsh on Connor Goldson, free kick awarded. Chris Weale takes the free kick.

62:51

Corner taken right-footed by Nicky Adams to the near post, Connor Goldson manages to make a clearance.

62:16

Free kick awarded for a foul by Jon Taylor on Mat Sadler. Mat Sadler takes the free kick.

61:15 Substitution

Substitution Sergio Torres comes on in place of Mustapha Dumbuya.

58:26

Effort from inside the area by Jamie Proctor misses to the right of the target.

55:44

Tom Eaves concedes a free kick for a foul on Mark Connolly. Mark Connolly restarts play with the free kick. Billy Clarke takes a shot. Save made by Chris Weale.

53:14

Foul by Connor Goldson on Jamie Proctor, free kick awarded. Dannie Bulman takes the direct free kick. Close range shot by Jamie Proctor misses to the left of the goal.

52:48

Tom Eaves has an effort at goal from outside the area missing to the wide right of the goal.

51:45

Jamie Proctor takes a shot. Connor Goldson gets a block in. Paul Hayes is ruled offside. Free kick taken by Chris Weale.

50:55

Foul by Billy Clarke on Joe Jacobson, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Joe Jacobson.

49:57

Paul Hayes is caught offside. Connor Goldson takes the free kick.

48:48

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Stephen McGinn by Paul Hayes. Free kick taken by Yado Mambo.

47:33

The assist for the goal came from Stephen McGinn.

47:33 Goal scored

Goal! - Tom Eaves - Shrewsbury 1 - 0 Crawley A goal is scored by Tom Eaves from just outside the penalty area to the top left corner of the goal. Shrewsbury 1-0 Crawley Town.

45:01

The match restarts for the second half.

45:00 +1:03 Half time

Half Time The referee blows for half time.

44:25

Free kick taken by Mark Connolly. Jamie Proctor takes a shot. Save by Chris Weale.

44:25 Booking

Booking Matthew Richards is shown a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.

44:08

Foul by Matthew Richards on Billy Clarke, free kick awarded.

43:16

Tom Eaves takes a shot. Blocked by Joe Walsh.

42:38

Foul by Dannie Bulman on Jon Taylor, free kick awarded. Jon Taylor restarts play with the free kick.

41:34

Tom Eaves has an effort at goal from just outside the area which goes wide of the left-hand post.

40:36

Jon Taylor takes a shot. Save by Paul Jones.

39:08

Paul Hayes is penalised for a handball. Matthew Richards delivers the ball from the free kick right-footed from right channel, clearance made by Paul Hayes.

36:06

Marvin Morgan gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Mark Connolly. Mustapha Dumbuya restarts play with the free kick.

33:14

Jamie Proctor takes a shot. Save by Chris Weale. Free kick awarded for a foul by Jon Taylor on Dannie Bulman. Billy Clarke produces a strike on goal direct from the free kick.

32:32

Mustapha Dumbuya fouled by Jon Taylor, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Paul Jones.

31:47

Shot from outside the area by Nicky Adams misses to the left of the target.

30:23

Paul Jones takes the free kick.

30:23 Substitution

Substitution Josh Simpson on for Matthew Sparrow.

30:23

The official flags Tom Eaves offside.

27:28

Stephen McGinn takes a shot. Save by Paul Jones. Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Matthew Richards.

26:42

Shot from outside the area by Billy Clarke misses to the left of the goal.

25:43

Jamie Proctor takes a shot.

23:52

Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Nicky Adams, Mark Connolly concedes a free kick for a foul on Yado Mambo. Chris Weale restarts play with the free kick.

21:59

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Nicky Adams, Close range header by Mark Connolly goes over the crossbar.

21:26

The official flags Tom Eaves offside. Free kick taken by Paul Jones.

20:46

Unfair challenge on Luke Summerfield by Matthew Sparrow results in a free kick. Matthew Richards delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right by-line, Mat Sadler manages to make a clearance.

17:58

Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Matthew Richards.

15:35

Connor Goldson takes a shot. Save by Paul Jones.

14:58

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Tom Eaves by Joe Walsh. Matthew Richards takes the direct free kick.

12:21

Free kick awarded for a foul by Dannie Bulman on Marvin Morgan. Direct free kick taken by Luke Summerfield.

10:15

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Luke Summerfield by Paul Hayes. Free kick taken by Connor Goldson.

7:45

Nicky Adams takes a shot. Yado Mambo gets a block in. Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Mat Sadler, Headed effort from inside the area by Joe Walsh misses to the right of the goal.

6:40

Centre by Mustapha Dumbuya, Jamie Proctor produces a header from inside the area that goes over the crossbar.

5:26

Effort from the edge of the area by Jamie Proctor goes wide of the right-hand upright.

1:57

The referee gives a free kick against Stephen McGinn for handball. Mark Connolly takes the free kick.

0:00

The game gets underway.

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