A trio of Brooksby Melton College students celebrated their first team debuts for League Two side Mansfield Town last week.
The three current students and one alumnus helped the Stags secure a 3-2 win against Scunthorpe United in the Checkatrade Trophy.
Nyle Blake (18), Alistair Smith (19) and Jason Law (19) were part of the starting line-up, with Tom Fielding (19) coming on as a sub.
Blake, who completed his Level 3 Sport qualification earlier this year, marked his debut in style with a first-half goal.
Smith, Law and Fielding are part of the MTFC Academy programme at Brooksby, and are working towards foundation degrees in sports science.
Smith said: “I really enjoyed playing alongside the more experienced players at the football club.
“They supported and guided me throughout the game and my confidence grew as the game went on.
“To get a win on my debut was so pleasing; I just want to continue to develop and improve.”
Mansfield Town academy manager, John Dempster, added: “The academy students that started the game and came off the bench performed brilliantly against the seasoned professionals that Scunthorpe United fielded.
“All of the academy staff were very proud because a lot of hard work goes into the players on a daily basis at the Brooksby campus.”
* To find out more about sports science degrees at BMC, visit he.brooksbymelton.ac.uk