- ETHX SCOTTISH JUNIOR CUP
- Semi-final 1st leg
- Loch Park, New Cumnock
- Saturday 15th April 2017
- GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 1 (0)
- Dan Orsi
- Bonnyrigg Rose Athletic 0 (0)
Glenafton played host to Bonnyrigg Rose in the Scottish Junior Cup semi-final 1st leg some 54 years after the sides last met in the competition which was also at the semi-final stage. It took three games to separate the teams with the Glens progressing to their first final after an extra time winner in a 2nd replay and like then today’s match proved to be close encounter with the home side taking a 1-0 lead into the second leg at New Dundas Park next Saturday.
The Glens had to make a late change to their starting line-up after top goalscorer Chris Dallas, who had picked up a knee-knock against Beith last week, required treatment in the pre-match warm-up before being deemed unfit to play and his place taken by Joe Andrew.
After club captains Craig Menzies and Jonathan Stewart exchanged club pennants the Glens kicked-off against a cold and strong gusting wind. The visitors fashioned the first attempt a goal after Lewis Turner and Alan Horne combined well wide on the right before the latter broke into the box and fired for goal only for the ball to be blocked by David Gray. It was the Glens midfielder that set up the home side’s opening chance with a free kick floated to the back post where Kyle McAusland beat Dean Hoskins to the ball only for his header to sneak inches wide of target.
On 7 minutes Turner’s attempt to gather a one-two with Wayne McIntosh inside the Glens box was intercepted by Menzies’ timely tackle and the grounded midfielder appeals for a penalty waved away.
The home side enjoyed a good spell of pressure from a series of set pieces none of which tested Bonnyrigg keeper Michael Andrews. A wind-assisted Gray free kick from 35 yards out sailed over the bar. Soon after his corner-kick to the near post was cleared at the expense of throw-in which resulted in the midfielder gathering the ball on the edge of the box before thundering a shot screaming wide of the post. Back-to-back corner-kicks quickly followed, the first cleared at the near post and the second picked up at the back post by McAusland before the defender, from a tight angle, lashed a shot that screamed over the finger-tips of the keepers’ hands and over the bar. On 20 minutes a fine run by John Carter ended with Rose conceding yet another free kick on the fringes of the penalty box before Gray’s free-kick curled wide of target.
The visitors created the best chance of the game thus far on 25 minutes. Ruaridh Donaldson blocked a McAusland clearance, recovered the loose ball before tearing down the left-wing and whipped a perfectly weighted pass into box to be met by Kieran McGachie who struck the ball sweetly from six yards only for Brian McGarrity to pull off a superb reflex save and the alert keeper then win the race to pounce on the loose ball.
Back came Glenafton through another Gray free-kick that deflected off the defensive wall and dipped just over the bar. The resulting corner-kick was cleared by McGachie at the near post and the follow-up corner came to nothing.
At the other end McAusland and Ryan McChesney took turns to repel Rose attacks with powerful clearing headers. The visitors continued to press and the referee played a good advantage after a late tackle by Gray at the half-way line to allow the Rose attack to progress and the ball finally falling for McGachie but again the striker was foiled by the onrushing McGarrity. Ally Park then beat Hoskins to the jump as a free-kick was floated to the back post.
Darren McGill, Andrew and Carter combined well to move the ball from the left hand side their own half to the Rose box where a series of three timely tackles on Andrew (twice) and Carter prevented the home side from engineering a shot at goal. Carter then picked out Andrew on the right and the striker took a touch or two before advancing to the corner of the penalty box and lashing a shot that whizzed past Andrews at full stretch and just wide of the post.
In the closing action of the half another Glens corner-kick was cleared without difficulty and at the other end McGarrity bravely clutched a cross from the feet of McIntosh.
HT Glenafton 0 Bonnyrigg 0
The visitors now with the wind at their back won an early corner-kick that was confidently and comfortably clutched out the air by McGarrity.
Glenafton were coping well playing against the wind and pressed with some fine passing play. On 58 minutes a Glens attack deep into the box was headed clear and although the ball was picked up by Adam Nelson a loose pass was snapped up by Dan Orsi. The midfielder instantly forged forward before striking a sweet shot from 20 yards out that squeezed through the gap between two defenders (one with his eye on the overlapping decoy Ally Park) and beyond the outstretched arm of Andrews into the left-hand corner of the net.
A minute later McAusland’s long through ball was gathered by Carter who pushed forward where after nutmegging Edward Moyes on the outskirts of the box both players chased down the loose ball in the box where Moyes tackle brought down Carter and the referee pointed to the penalty spot. The Rose defender’s claims that he fairly won the ball were waved away and the luckless Moyes was shown a red card for his robust protests. Although McGill’s spot kick sent Andrews the wrong way his spot kick thundered off the base of post and the ball fell for McAusland who from 20 yards thundered a shot that warmed the hands of the now upright keeper.
Glenafton took full advantage of their numerical advantage and enjoyed the majority of the attacking play that followed whilst handling Rose’s less frequent breaks comfortably with Craig Menzies sweeping them up in some style.
On 63 minutes Carter came close to doubling the Glens lead after running onto to a clever through ball from Orsi and holding off two defenders in the box before turning and firing a low shot that slipped past the wrong-footed keeper and inches wide of the post.
Both sides made substitutions with Rose bringing on Jonathan Brown and Andrew Kidd for Wayne McIntosh and Adam Nelson while Glenafton replaced Darren McGill and Dan Orsi with Conor Lynass and Ryan Borris.
Bonnyrigg finished with a flurry beginning with a long throw into a crowded box where Turner snapped up McGachie’s knock on only for his looping shot to drop safely into the hands of McGarrity. A corner-kick cleared by the Glens defence and eventually picked up by Jonathan Stewart but the full back’s shot from distance was well of target. Stewart, with a strong claim for Rose’s man-of-the-match, then had a near post header saved by McGarrity and in the last action of the game the ball from another corner-kick didn’t bounce kindly for him and his fresh-air shot was promptly followed by the final whistle.
FT Glenafton 1 Bonnyrigg 0
Congratulations to goal scorer Dan Orsi who was selected as man-of-the-match after the game.
GLENAFTON ATHLETIC: 1. Brian McGarrity 2. Kyle McAusland 3. Cameron Marlow 4. Craig Menzies 5. Ryan McChesney 6. Ally Park. 7. Dan Orsi (14. Ryan Borris) 8. David Gray 9. Joe Andrew 10. John Carter 11. Darren McGill (15. Conor Lynass) Subs not used: 16. Chris Meikle 17. Blair Lochhead (gk)
BONNYRIGG ROSE ATHLETIC: 1. Michael Andrews 2. Alan Horne 3. Dean Hoskins 4. Jonathan Stewart 5. Edward Moyes 6. Kerr Young 7. Wayne McIntosh (12. Brown) 8. Lewis Turner 9. Kieran McGachie 10. Adam Nelson (14. Andrew Kidd) 11. Ruaridh Donaldson Subs not used 15. Scott Gray 16. Sean Jamieson 17. Jordan Orru