West Region Premier Division
Saturday14th September, Loch Park, New Cumnock
GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 2 (1)
LARGS THISTLE 1 (1)
Glenafton began with the same starting eleven that earned a point at Pollok last week. Playing up front for Largs was James Marks, in his second spell with the club, who was on the score sheet for Arthurlie on his last visit to Loch Park.
The north Ayrshire side got off to the best of starts taking the lead with only 8 minutes gone. With his path down the right flank blocked full back Ian Fisher rolled the ball back into his own half for Michael Holden to launch it high into the box where it sailed over the head of Marks and his marker Ryan McChesney and was gathered by Euan Lindsay who turned Jame McGeoghan before drilling a low hard shot into the net.
Glens first chance began with a determined run by Craig Menzies and a defence splitting ball that freed Cameron Marlow to break down the left and into the Largs box before squaring for Scott Adam. The big striker took a touch before keeper Ryan McWilliams blocked his shot and the Largs defence stood firm as Marlow and then Aaron Connolly tried to bury the loose ball.
At the other end Fisher’s fine cross from the right touch line found the head of Marks in the six yard box only for keeper Brian McGarrity to safely clutch his powerful downward header. The home side responded with a corner kick which was partially cleared and the ball retrieved by Connolly at the edge of the box who engineered a shot at goal which whizzed wide of the post.
Glens continued to press and Stevie Miller’s cross from deep in the right saw both Adam and Connolly challenge for the ball at the back post, with latter’s header going wide. Miller’s corner kick from the left was then hooked out the box only for the alert Menzies to instantly pick out Miller, still wide on the left, with a peach of a pass. The midfielder then skipped past Willie Boyd before lofting the ball to the back post where the head of the incoming Aaron Connolly guided the ball into the roof of the net to draw the team’s level after 32 minutes.
Glens carved out another couple of decent chances before the break both of which ended with shots from the edge of the box, one save comfortably by McWilliams, the other swerving wide of target. H/T Glens 1 Largs 1
Largs were first to threaten after the break with some fast flowing passing play down the right culminating in a cross into the box for Marks, but again his header was off target. The Glens replied with a break down the right by MGeoghan and a cut back to Findlay Frye who then rolled the ball into the path of Jamie McKernon to smack the ball first time from 20 yards only for McWilliams to pull off a great save at the expense of a corner kick. Miller then drove down the right and picked out Connolly in the box but his flying header flew past the post. A couple of corners in quick succession for the visitors were defended well, McGarrity saving well from the head of Marks.
The visitors passed up a great chance of regaining the lead after a long through ball was killed in the box by Marks and then knocked beyond the advancing McGarrity for the incoming Andy Monaghan only for the ball to be stolen from his toes by an outstretched leg of the back tracking Menzies. Soon after a Largs corner was won at the back post by Marks but his shot was wide of the mark.
On 77 minutes the Glens took the lead after Frye found substitute Craig Brown who took a touch before delicately chipping the ball over the Largs defence into the box for Cameron Marlow to chase and slot home first time from a narrow angle.
The visitors luck deserted them when the irrepressible Marks won another ball in the air deep in the box which fell for John McStay only for his well worked shot to skim off the outside of the post.
FT Glenafton 2 Largs 1
Glenafton: McGarrity; McGeoghan, McChesney, Menzies, Cairns; Miller, Frye, McKernon, Marlow (Dimilta); Connolly & Adam (Brown} Subs. Craig, Maltoni
Largs: McWilliams, Fisher , C. Little (Mcstay), Walton, Holden, Thomson, Boyd, Muir, Marks, Monaghan (N. Little), Lindsay. Subs. Gilbride, Keogh, Lappin
Glenafton TV : 1st half highlights here
Glenafton TV : 2nd half highlights here