A first-half hat-trick from Brennan Johnson ensured Nottingham Forest Under 23s finished the season on a high as they beat table-toppers Ipswich Town 4-1 at Portman Road.
Will Swan's goal in his first start for the Under 23s also helped make it four wins from their final four games as they ended the 2018-19 campaign in style in the Professional Development League.
The Reds made a positive start to the contest and that soon showed when Johnson netted his first of the evening. The midfielder lined up a free-kick from 20-yards out and curled it into the top corner to give his side a deserved lead.
Ten minutes later Johnson made it two when he volleyed home from outside the area, five minutes before Swan made it three when he tapped home a loose ball from Jayden Richardson's shot that was saved.
Johnson then secured his first-half hat-trick when he coolly slotted home from inside the area after more Forest pressure. On the brink of half-time the home side did pull a goal back however, as Tom Adeyemi finished off a neat move.
The home side enjoyed more of the ball after the break, but The Reds held firm and created some good opportunities themselves. Swan went close again for the visitors when he raced into the area and fired a low shot towards the near post which was held by the goalkeeper. The forward was then replaced by Victor Sodeinde.
Forest continued to manage the game well throughout the second half, as Josh Barnes came on to replace Kieran Hayes before Keith Asare replaced Tyrese Fornah. Frustrations then boiled over for the home side when Cotter was sent off for the home side in the final minute as The Reds ran out victorious.
Forest: Shelvey, Richardson, Spooner, Taylor, Lawrence-Gabriel, Stewart, Johnson, Fornah (Asare 87'), En-Neyah, Hayes (Barnes 76'), Swan (Sodeinde 67')
Subs not used: Wright, Mutoti
Goals: Johnson 17', 27', 37', Swan 31'