Ardagh Cup Section 4 : Match 5
Saturday 20th August, Rosebank Park, Lugar
LUGAR BOSWELL THISTLE 0 (0)
GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 5 (2)
Glenafton travelled to Lugar for the concluding sectional match in this season’s Ardagh Glass Cup in the knowledge their hopes of qualifying stages would require a win and either of Auchinleck or Cumnock to lose their matches.
The visitors welcomed club captain Craig Menzies back from injury while Joe Andrew and Mick McCann joined Ryan Borris on the injury list. Familiar faces in the Lugar line-up where former Glenafton players Steven Shankland, Jim Wilson and Klark Thomson with Davie Clapperton on the bench.
The Glens were quickly on the front foot in the relentless Rosebank rain and opened the scoring on 11 minutes after Kyle McAusland made good progress down the right flank before clipping the ball into the box for Cameron Marlow to gather and slam the ball home before defenders closed him down.
Two minutes later the home side came within a whisker of an equaliser following a breakdown in communication at a pass-back between keeper Brian McGarrity and McAusland only for the full back to keep his nerve and boot the ball to safety as it rolled towards the gaping empty net.
Normal service resumed and back came Glens through Connor Lynass weaving his way past defenders down the right before unleashing a low angled drive that pulled off a great save from the keeper Ronnie Davis followed by a fine block as Chris Dallas tried to bury the rebound.
On 21 minutes Lugar were caught napping at quickly taken throw-in deep on the left allowing Dallas to take the ball to the deadline before cutting it back for Cameron Marlow to side-step a couple a defenders before clipping a delightful angled shot beyond the reach of the keeper trying to cover his near post.
Four minutes later and a cute pass from Ally Park released Dallas to break into the box and shrug off Craig Muir before striking for goal only for the outrushing Davis to get a foot to the ball and push it wide for a corner-kick which was eventually scrambled clear by the Boswell back line.
Soon after the Jaggy Bunnets created their best chance of the half after Shankland slipped the ball into the box for Wilson to get the jump on McAusland but as the striker looked certain to stroke the ball past the advancing McGarrity, the Glens defender recovered to slide in and send the ball wide of the post for a corner-kick.
Glenafton continued to push for a third with Dallas denied by Davis from close range, the keeper then saving Darren McGill’s shot from 20 yards and McAusland’s header from a corner-kick looping over the bar.
H/T Lugar 0 Glenafton 2
The visitors having introduced Andrew Hunter and Dan Orsi for Ally Park and Darren McGill were soon on the attack. Marlow’s snapshot from the edge of the box was well held by the keeper in difficult conditions and later the midfielder then latched onto a cross from Dallas only for his shot to whizz over the bar.
At the other end the Lugar substitute gathered the ball with his back to goal and turned brilliantly to shake off a clutch of defenders before hitting a thunderous shot but McGarrity was his match and got down low to parry the ball away with both hands.
Glens extended their lead on the hour mark after a great run by Dan Orsi from deep in his own half to the edge of the Lugar box where he turned the defender outside in before drilling the ball from 18 yards which then deflected off the defender’s foot and wrong footed the keeper before nestling in the corner of the net.
A minute later David Gray clipped a great ball into a busy box for Dallas who killed it dead with some style to set up another chance only to be felled by a defender. The striker stepped up to take the spot kick and Davis pulled off a fine save to push the ball wide of the post.
At the other end McGarrity foiled a Wilson effort and then cleanly clutched the ball from the head of Muir from the resultant corner-kick. Glens won a corner soon after when Marlow’s attempt to clinch his hat-trick was deflected over the bar by Thomson.
Midway through the half Chris Dallas’s efforts were rewarded with the goal of the game. Collecting the ball in his own half his blistering place took him deep into the Lugar box and as the keeper advanced from his line he picked his spot and slammed the ball into the net. Glens then made their final substitution with Chris Meikle coming on for Cameron Marlow.
Shankland did well to carve out an opening but Menzies and McGarrity combined to block the effort as Lugar looked for a lifeline. Meanwhile Glens were looking to add to their tally as David held a low drive from Lynass then palmed a blistering shot from Dallas over the bar.
On 83 minutes another powerful run by Orsi found the midfielder deep in the Lugar box with only the advancing keeper to beat and unselfishly roll the ball to the far post for the incoming Connor Lynass to guide the ball home.
Chances continued to come the way of the Glens and less often to Lugar who came close to bagging a consolation after good work by Wilson ended with a low angled shot in the box that although beat McGarrity it sneaked wide of the far post. Glens finished with a flurry of the chances including shots from Gray and Lynass and a header form Dallas all of which could not get the better of Davis.
In the last action of the match McGarrity turned a low drive from Shankland round the post and the held the corner-kick that followed as Wilson waited to pounce.
FT Lugar 0 Glenafton 5
Glenafton Athletic: 1. Brian McGarrity 2. Kyle McAusland 3. Alan Cairns 4. Craig Menzies 5. Ryan McChesney 6. David Gray 7. Ally Park (14. Andrew Hunter) 8.Cameron Marlow (15. Chris Meikle) 9. Chris Dallas 10. Connor Lynass 11. Darren McGill (12. Dan Orsi) Subs. Blair Lochhead (gk), 16. John Paul Boyle
More photos here