First goals for Ollie Cooper and Courtney Baker-Richardson, along with a Dom Telford strike, helped Newport County AFC see off Scunthorpe United at a rain-soaked Rodney Parade.
The deadlock was broken in the opening minutes with a well-taken goal from Cooper before a stunning 25-yard strike from Baker-Richardson doubled the advantage.
Telford was unlucky not to add his name to the scoresheet after he was denied by the woodwork and a goal-line clearance but the striker eventually got his reward in the final minutes to seal all three points.
There were four changes to the side for the first game under interim manager Wayne Hatswell with Joe Day, Mickey Demetriou, Cooper and Telford all returning to the starting XI.
The match almost got off to a bad start when referee Stephen Martin accidentally collided with Matty Dolan, which then triggered a counter-attack for Scunthorpe. Hayden Hackney bore down on goal but his effort didn’t test Day.
County reacted well and took control of the match after just six minutes. Nobody tracked the run of Cooper and the on-loan midfielder stole in at the front post to divert Cameron Norman’s whipped delivery beyond Rory Watson.
A short pass from a free kick saw Ed Upson test Watson from range before a lofted through ball from the midfielder, from a similar set piece, almost saw Norman escape his marker only for the linesman to raise his flag.
The Iron grew into the game and were eager to test the Exiles’ resolve with a number of crosses. The backline stood strong in the pouring rain and Day remained relatively quiet, although he almost helped double County’s lead
The goalkeeper went close to claiming an assist on the stroke of half time when his long ball was collected by Telford, who cut inside and arrowed a shot onto the outside of the post. It was the second time Telford had left Watson helpless after a Baker-Richardson effort had deflected off him before bouncing wide.
Finn Azaz was introduced on 53 minutes, in place of Cooper, and was inches away from scoring with one of his first touches. Norman’s delivery from the right wing was pin-point but the ball bobbled at just the wrong time and narrowly evaded the unmarked Azaz.
Telford continued to cause problems and once again had Watson beaten with his header across goal but Manny Onariase was there to clear it off the line and keep him off the scoresheet.
The Exiles kept the pressure on the Scunthorpe goal with Upson, Telford and Ryan Haynes all firing over but the second goal eventually came when Baker-Richardson’s unstoppable curler flew into the top-right corner.
Fisher came on for the 15 minutes as the Exiles sensed another goal and it arrived with seven minutes left on the clock. A long-range effort from Azaz cannoned off the post but Fisher reacted quickest and he found Telford, who flicked the ball into the net, for a deserved goal before being replaced by Timmy Abraham.
There was still work to do at the other end to preserve the clean sheet but Day was up to the job with a superb close-range save to deny Ryan Loft before an outstretched leg kept out Jake Scrimshaw, who spent time on loan at Newport last season.
Newport County AFC: Joe Day; James Clarke, Matty Dolan (C), Mickey Demetriou; Cameron Norman, Robbie Willmott, Ed Upson, Ollie Cooper (Finn Azaz 53), Ryan Haynes; Dom Telford (Timmy Abraham 86), Courtney Baker-Richardson (Alex Fisher 76).
Subs not used: Nick Townsend, Aaron Lewis, Christopher Missilou, Kevin Ellison.
Attendance: 3,213 (98 Scunthorpe United).