Bideford 2 Argyle XI 0
A YOUNG Argyle Development XI slumped to their first pre-season defeat against their much physically stronger opponents......from the Calor Southern League Premier Division at the Sports Ground.
Central defender Jamie Richards and striker Isaac Vassell were the only professionals deployed to boost coach Kevin Hodges' under-18 squad.
The game had a dramatic opening when the hosts were awarded a first minute penalty when Pilgrims' defender Tom Moxham was adjudged to have fouled Craig Duff but for goalkeeper Jake McCabe to pull off a brilliant save.
The tall custodian, a member of the Greens' Community football education scheme with a distinctive mop of red hair, dived full-length to his left to palm Matt Hockley's driven spot-kick away to safety.
The Robins were not to be denied for long as, six minutes later, a slick passing movement ended with Duff opening the scoring with a low 15-yard shot into the far corner of McCabe's goal.
Sixteen-year-old midfielder Ryan Lane, pictured, who scored a spectacular debut goal against MK Dons in the first team friendly at Home Park the previous day, was in the Pilgrims' line-up and it was from one of his free-kick that the visitors nearly equalised.
Vassell's subsequent header forced home 'keeper Steve Oliver to produce a fine finger touch save.
To their credit, Argyle's youngsters stuck doggedly to their task but Bideford further increased their lead on the hour when former Torquay professional Saul Halpin buried a 15-yard, angled, shot low to McCabe's left.
Argyle: Jake McCabe (Andrew Hannah 65), Mason Hughes, Tom Moxham (Nathan Ewings 75), River Allen, Nathan Summers (Will Sargent 78), Jamie Richards, Solomon Wheatley (Ethan Stark 78), Kieran Asumuda-Sakyi, Isaac Vassell (Louis Rooney 60) Ryan Lane (Lambert Keise 45), Joshua Hutchinson.