Story of the match
Argyle kicked off an end-to-end opening 10 minutes, though, it was the home side who enjoyed the first chance of the match. A direct run into the box from Ogbeta ended with a cut back to Whalley, whose close-range shot was blocked for a corner.
Despite possession being with the Pilgrims in the opening stages, it was Shrewsbury who were getting closest to breaking the deadlock.
A set-piece, sent in by Sean Goss and helped on by Ethan Ebanks-Landell, forced a fine save from Mike Cooper - who tipped it onto the post with an outstretched glove – before the resulting corner saw a drilled effort from Ollie Norburn fly inches wide of the target.
Plymouth, who were desperately trying to drag themselves into the game, soon created chances of their own. The South Coast side focused their attacks through talisman Danny Mayor, who came close when his lofted ball across goal narrowly missed Niall Ennis at the far post – ending the Pilgrims’ closing chance in the first half.
Argyle started off lively in the second half, with Mayor collecting the ball in his own half before embarking on a mazy run to the edge of the Shrewsbury box. The midfielder’s overcooked pass found Ennis, who managed to get the ball under control before turning and firing across goal - forcing a save from Shrewsbury custodian Matija Sarkic.
However, the Pilgrims were unable to capitalise on their early dominance and soon found themselves wishing they did.
With 52 minutes played, Whalley darted into the box from the right-hand side, beating defender Kell Watts for pace before getting a shot off. The effort cannoned off Aimson, sending the ball looping over the airborne keeper - putting the hosts in front.
The goal sparked a double change from Argyle boss Lowe, who freshened up his strike force in hope of getting back into the tie.
Shrews, though, extended their lead shortly after – reducing any hope of a Pilgrims comeback to a pipe dream. The theme of the fixture continued again, with the hosts scoring again through another Plymouth mistake in the 77th minute.
A nonchalant back-pass from Conor Grant fell short of its target, leaving the ball in no man’s land on the edge of the six-yard box. Whalley was quickest off the block, slotting the loose ball past Cooper – leaving the Argyle midfielder with his head in his hands.
Shrewsbury kept their foot on Plymouth’s neck and were soon rewarded for their sustained pressure in the 81st minute. Ogbeta collected the ball at the edge of the Pilgrims’ box before curling an effort through a sea of green shirts and into the bottom corner – closing the curtains on a disappointing Argyle performance.
Takeaways from the match
The 50-point mark
In a first half that saw Plymouth fail to register a shot on goal, it seems the side who occupy the 15th spot in the league have deemed themselves safe from relegation – having passed the 50-point mark on Friday with a home win against AFC Wimbledon.
Lowe’s side had gone three games unbeaten in recent weeks but have looked far from convincing in the process.
With Argyle now all but mathematically safe from the drop, could these performances continue for the remainder of the campaign?
The Shrews striker was responsible for the opening two goals, despite only receiving credit for the second.
The 33-year-old was clinical when his side needed it most – scoring his first goal since February and just his seventh of the season.
The wing-back was certainly the pick of the bunch on the pitch, causing all sorts of trouble down Argyle’s right-hand side throughout the tie.
The 19-year-old, who joined the Shropshire club in January, netted a deserved goal at the end – a fine one at that.
Shrewsbury: Sarkic (GK), Williams, Pennington, Ebanks-Landell, Ogbeta, Vela, Norburn, Goss (Edwards 87’), Love (Davis 87’), Whalley (Pyke 90’), Udoh (Main 78’).
Subs not used: Burgoyne (GK), Chapman.
Booked: Norburn 74’, Vela 85’.
Plymouth: Cooper (GK), Watts, Opoku, Aimson, Grant, Fornah (Lewis 74’), Mayor, Camara (Reeves 74’), Edwards (Moore 74’), Hardie (Jephcott 64’), Ennis (Lolos 64’).
Subs not used: McCormick (GK), Tomlinson.
Booked: Camara 44’.
Referee: Bobby Madley