NEWPORT County AFC deservedly ensured that Stockport weren’t record-breakers at Rodney Parade with a superb 2-1 win in League Two.

The Hatters headed to Newport after 12 successive league triumphs but the disciplined Exiles, who got it spot-on tactically, mean that they must share the fourth tier record with Luton’s class of 2002 (insert unlucky 13 quip here…).

Graham Coughlan’s side led 1-0 after striking at the death of a tight first half devoid of clear chances through Bryn Morris, who scored from the edge of the box after the Hatters were caught napping from a free-kick.

The expected Stockport onslaught failed to come after the resumption and Newport doubled their advantage with another cracker from Shane McLoughlin, who added another contender for goal of the season by smashing a left-footed rocket in after 67 minutes.

The Hatters pushed in the final stages but Tanto Olaofe's late, late goal didn't lead to a burglary.

It was a well-organised, hard-working and battling performance from Newport, who also showed moments of quality.

The victory shows what they can achieve when not ravaged by injury and also boost their tally as they bid to avoid trouble at the bottom.

Now they must rest and recover for a long trip north to Morecambe on Tuesday, buoyed by three points that few outside the camp saw coming.

South Wales Argus: Omar Bogle before slipping the ball through to Seb Palmer-HouldenOmar Bogle before slipping the ball through to Seb Palmer-Houlden (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

Coughlan made three changes to the XI from the 2-0 loss at Mansfield with Matt Baker back from Wales Under-21 duty and the fit-again pair of James Clarke and Seb Palmer-Houlden promoted from the bench.

Shane McLoughlin shifted to left-back and Clarke took his central defensive spot where he was joined by Baker, with Scot Bennett returning to midfield.

Palmer-Houlden played on the left of a hard-pressing strike partnership with Will Evans, last season’s top scorer Omar Bogle playing slightly deeper at the start.

The Exiles made a sharp start but the Hatters gradually took control with a first half-chance in the 11th minute when Tanto Olaofe slipped as he tried to shoot on the turn from a corner, shanking wide.

Newport created an opening in the 16th minute through their strike trio with Evans winning possession and Bogle slipping in Palmer-Houlden but his strike was well blocked in the box by Welshman Macauley Southam-Hales.

It was a tight contest, and that would have pleased Coughlan after they were chasing from the fourth minute at Field Mill.

There was a break in play after referee Darren Drysdale copped an accidental arm in the face and needed treatment for a bloody mouth.

South Wales Argus: Ryan Delaney launches the ball forward for CountyRyan Delaney launches the ball forward for County (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

It looked like he would be whistling for a goalless first half but then the Exiles struck in the fourth of four added minutes.

Lewis Payne was brought down on the right of the area and McLoughlin rolled the ball to Morris, who side-footed an effort past Ben Hinchliffe.

Shoddy defending and possibly poor goalkeeping, but Newport didn’t care as they got something to hold onto.

The expectation was that Stockport would come flying out of the traps but that didn’t happen; the Exiles played with discipline and the first incident of note was a wild tackle by Ibou Touray on Evans that earned yellow rather than red.

He could have had no complaints if it was a dismissal but Dryssdale didn’t rush into the decision, just as he didn’t moments later when Tanto Olaofe tried to buy a penalty under pressure from Ryan Delaney.

Newport made it to the hour with their lead in tact and prompted changes from the away dugout, but the new boys were soon faced by a two-goal deficit.

A dangerous cross from the right was glanced away from goal but to McLoughlin, who promptly smashed in a left-footed cracker that gave Hinchliffe no chance.

Newport were surely going to end the winning streak but wanted to ensure they took three points rather than one.

Evans went close with a left-footed curler from a counter-attack and then Kiban Rai, fresh on for the excellent Palmer-Houlden, cut onto his right but his finish was wild.

However, the Exiles then started sitting deep and inviting pressure, a dangerous game even though time was against the Hatters.

It was one-way traffic and Stockport denied Newport a clean sheet deep in added time when Olaofe bundled in after what could have been a foul on Townsend.

Thankfully that was the end of the drama as the Exiles recorded a magnificent win.

County: Townsend, Payne, Clarke, Bennett, Delaney (captain), McLoughlin, Baker, Morris, Evans, Palmer-Houlden (Rai 70), Bogle.
Substitutes not used: Maxted, Bondswell, Waite, Wood, Sanca.

Scorers: Morris, McLoughlin.

Attendance: 4,053.
Referee: Darren Drysdale.