Neil Thompson has overseen two Championship wins on the bounce since succeeding the sacked Tony Pulis on a temporary basis.
But he was absent in Devon as the most high-profile victim of the Covid-19 infections that have swept through the Owls camp, which forced the club’s training ground to be shut last week.
Wednesday, who were only able to name four substitutes for the game, were managed by Andy Holdsworth, who praised his side.
“The lads have been professional in everything they have done today. The remit was to get through to the next round, and we have done that,” he said.
“The commitment, desire and the work ethic of the lads to go and win the game was pleasing. It was a professional performance from the lads and they deserve everything they have got.
“We wanted to keep the momentum going as well. Neil (Thompson) has come and done really well in the last three performances and got the points. Winning games breeds confidence in players.”
The Owls went in front after 28 minutes when Exeter’s self-confessed Wednesday fan Rory McArdle was caught napping and Adam Reach smashed a fantastic half-volley home.
Wednesday finished the game in the final minute when Callum Paterson tapped in from close range from Liam Shaw’s cross.
Exeter: Ward, Caprice, McArdle, Parkes, Page (Sparkes 46), Key,mTaylor (Atangana 77), Collins, Randall (Ajose 77), Bowman (Seymour 61), Jay (Law 61). Unused substitutes: Fisher, Maxted, Kite, Hartridge.
Sheffield Wednesday: Wildsmith, Odubajo, Brennan, Shaw, Galvin (Eratt-Thompson 90), Hunt (Dele-Bashiru 64), Pelupessy, Bannan, Reach, Paterson (Rice 90), Harris. Unused substitutes: Render.
Referee: D Whitestone (Northamptonshire).
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