Cumnock 0 Glenafton 0

ARDAGH AYRSHIRE SECTIONAL LEAGUE CUP

SECTION 4: Match 2

Saturday 30th July, Townhead Park, Cumnock

CUMNOCK JUNIORS 0 (0)

GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 0 (0)

Both sides began with their own G-forces leading the attack. Up front for the hosts were former Glenafton players Gavin Friels (who had a loan spell at Loch Park back in 2006) and trialist Gavin Brown while for the visitors were former Cumnock players Gareth Armstrong and Gareth Campbell . It was Campbell who eked out the first real chance when in 17 minutes he turned and drilled a low shot from inside the corner of the penalty box only for the keeper to turn it round the post. The Glens enjoyed of the possession with Paul McKenzie in menacing form on the trim Townhead turf leaving former Glens man Chic Connolly chasing shadows. Play was broken up with a few yellow cards dished out, Nock’s No. 11 for a rash challenge on Craig Menzies, Friels for kicking the ball away and Chic and Andy Bell sharing handbags. On 28 minutes the visitors pressure looked to have paid off but Craig McEwan’s thunderbolt from the far right off the penalty box crashed off the underside off the bar and off the line and into play where Armstrong’s attempt head it home was graciously grabbed by the goalie. Five minutes later a half-hearted claim for hand ball by Chic at the near post from another Glens’ corner were turned away. As the interval approached the hard-working Gavin Brown flashed a header across the Glens goal forcing Ally Semple to scurry across his line to ensure it was going just wide of target. Before the whistle Friels was fortunate not to walk as once again he kicked the ball away at a Glens’ free-kick. H/T Cumnock 0 Glens 0

Paul McKenzie and Andy Bell on the break

McKenzie continued to drive the visitors forward in search of the opener and on 57 minutes played a cute ball into the box for Armstrong to chase. The bounce of the ball clearly deceived defender Stuart MacDonald who used an arm to compensate, control and clear the ball heralding loud appeals for hand ball. The officials thought otherwise and the sheepish looks on MacDonald’s face suggest he got away with a ‘stane-dyker’. To rub salt in the wound Cumnock broke upfield and Brown burst into the box but in accidental collision both he and keeper Semple required attention for injuries sustained. Play was held up for 12 minutes as plasters and bandages were applied. Both soon showing they had fully recovered with Brown flooring McEwan with a wild challenge and Semple saving at the feet of Aaron Connolly. On 27 minutes the Glens produced the move of the match. Armstrong beat MacDonald to head the ball on for Campbell who quickly fed the ball back to Bo on the right touchline. Bo launched a long diagonal ball over the head of ‘Nock defence for Lewis Sloan, lurking with intent on the left flank, who met it on the drop and lashed it goalward beyond the reach of the keeper at full stretch, but it whizzed over the bar. Five minutes later Armstrong almost capitalised on a poor pass back from Chic but his lob from 15 yards out over the advancing keeper also went just over. Relieved, Cumnock broke up field with young Connolly showing great pace to get into the Glens’ box with Cammy McKinnell on his tail. The Glens defender’s last ditch tackle triggered a choreographed show of arms, the ‘Nock arms straight up in appeals for a penalty, the Afton arms horizontal indicating the direction of the ball, fairly won in their view, as it headed to the corner flag. The only arm that counted was the referee’s as it pointed to the penalty spot, held aloft a red card for McKinnel and showed Glens’ assistant manager Stevie Kerrigan the steps to the Cumnock clubhouse. The head bandaged Semple faced Chic Connolly but the former red was left with his head in his hands as his spot kick sailed over the bar bound for Barshare; it was not Chic’s day, however the other Connolly was soon proving a handful for the 10 men. On 37 minutes another burst of pace took him to the left side of the box where he clipped the ball past outcoming Semple but it trundled agonisingly wide of the far post. Soon after Freil’s found himself in space but shot tamely at goal. Then on what would have been the last minute of regulation time Cumnock’s trialist centre half rose above everyone at a corner kick but his downward header went just wide of target. The Glens gathered themselves for the 12 minutes of ‘injury time’ and in what was perhaps the best chance of that period, substitute Jim Wilson was unlucky with a cheeky lob past the goalie but both watched with different expressions on their faces as the ball squirmed wide of target.

Ally Semple

Glenafton: Semple; McEwan, McKinnell, Henderson, Menzies (McKillen); McKenzie, Bell, Potter, Sloan (Mitchell); Armstrong (Wilson J.), Campbell

Other scores: Kello 3 Muirkirk 0. Lugar 0 Auchinleck 5

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