Town snapped a seven game winning streak on Easter Monday with a richly deserved win over Play-Off chasing Ipswich Town.
Strikers Nahki Wells and James Vaughan terrorised the visiting defence and were well worth the goal apiece that they scored, but the overall team performance was as good as Town fans have seen since the last home win over Reading in late February and every player deserved credit.
The Terriers started brightly, as Wells and Sean Scannell immediately caused problems for centre halves Christophe Berra and Tommy Smith.
The first goal soon followed. Scannell chased the ball down whilst Zeki Fryers was in possession, causing an errant pass that Wells picked up midway in the Ipswich half.
The lapse in concentration from Fryers cost his side dearly; the Bermudian frontman carried the ball further forward and bent a left footed effort around Berra and past Bialkowski to give Town the lead.
A second goal followed shortly after as Ipswich looked on in dismay. Jacob Butterfield picked the ball up in a similar position to the one where Wells collected the loose ball for the first goal.
A swift turn from Butterfield opened up a few yards of space and instead of shooting, found Vaughan at the back post with a measured clip where a fine header from the Town striker beat Bialkowski as he looped his effort neatly into the side netting.
Christophe Berra then went into the referee’s book for a foul on Sean Scannell, after the winger tried to break away once again past Ipswich’s left full-back Fryers and his centre half.
Ipswich’s Tommy Smith also found himself receiving a yellow for a foul on goal scorer Vaughan.
Ipswich then came out for the second half looking to reduce the deficit, no doubt with the sound of Mick McCarthy’s voice still ringing in their ears.
The half-time team talk seemed to have great effect on the visitors and with two changes in the interval, the Blues looked dangerous.
Richard Chaplow and Chris Wood made way for Teddy Bishop and Freddie Sears. However it was Luke Varney who pulled one back in the 48th minute.
This then sent the game into an end-to-end affair as both sides tried to either reduce or increase the gap in the score-line.
Ipswich persistently sent the ball forward by means of pumping long balls up to Daryl Murphy, yet Hudson and Lynch dealt with the tall striker well.
Jonny Williams replaced Jay Tabb as Ipswich threw more and more at Chris Powell’s side; this gave the visitors a lift as Williams carried the ball forward with intent.
A handful of corners and half chances for Town gave the John Smith’s crowd reason to be hopeful for a third goal on the day, though Bialkowski kept out the best Town chance with a fine reaction stop. Hudson saw his initial effort cleared by the ‘keeper, however James Vaughan will be wondering how the Ipswich stopper kept out his effort from a yard or two out.
As the clock ran down David Edgar was called upon to sit in front of Town’s back four. The Canadian replaced Wells, who looked fatigued towards the end.
With the 90 minute mark moments away, Chris Powell made another change. Sean Scannell came off for Murray Wallace, however the Terriers still had one substitution to make before the end.
Town’s final change saw James Vaughan come off for Joe Lolley – the striker had received a yellow card prior to his early exit. This however was the last action of the match.
Town’s team (3-5-2):
Alex Smithies; Joel Lynch, Mark Hudson (c), Tommy Smith; Reece James, Jacob Butterfield, Oscar Gobern, Conor Coady, Sean Scannell (Murray Wallace, 90); James Vaughan (Joe Lolley, 90), Nahki Wells (David Edgar, 83)
Lloyd Allinson, Jake Carroll, Duane Holmes, Radoslaw Majewski