Dale ran out winners on Tuesday afternoon in the Youth Alliance Cup Northern Area Final, beating Grimsby Town 3-1 at Blundell Park.
Goals from Ethan Pye, Peter Thomas and Ben Kershaw ensured Dale came out on top in tough conditions on the east coast.
The result means they will now face either Peterborough United or Gillingham in the Youth Alliance Cup Final proper.
Dale took the lead when Thomas flicked a corner up into the air, with the ball eventually finding its way to Luke Nock who put the ball back across goal for Pye to head home.
Pye then prevented a goal at the other end with some last-ditch defending as he managed to divert a header behind for a corner which looked troublesome.
Morgan Kinsella’s driving run ended with Thomas shooting towards goal, his shot cannoned back out off the crossbar with the ‘keeper beaten.
A few minutes into the second half, Thomas did score – after his initial shot hit the post, he reacted quickest and stole the ball from the ‘keeper before he could get it under control and finished into the bottom corner.
Louie Chorlton then flashed a cross across the face of goal, but no one was on hand to convert.
Thomas almost doubled his tally when he shot towards goal, but it was tipped behind for a Dale corner.
The win was all but confirmed for Dale when Kershaw scored from 35-yards out with an outrageous goal.
After spotting the ‘keeper off his line, he chipped the ball over him and into the top corner perfectly to wrap the game up.
The home side were awarded a penalty with five minutes left to play, Chorlton being adjudged to have pulled a Grimsby attacker to the floor.
Harvey Tomlinson stepped up and scored what proved to be a mere consolation for Grimsby with Dale seeing the game out and earning a well-deserved victory.
DALE XI | Chalton, Chorlton, Kinsella, Pye, D’Souza, Nock, Clarkson, Kershaw, Scanlon, Thomas, Wright (79’).
SUBS | Kelly, Caldwell, Kyffin, Mialkowski, Jesus, Cullen (79’).