- New Coin Automatics West of Scotland Cup
- Round 1
- Loch Park, New Cumnock
- Saturday 11th November 2017
- GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 2 (0)
- Ryan Borris, Kyle McAusland
- Girvan 3 (3)
- Michael Reilly, Craig Reid 2
Glenafton hosted Girvan in the New Coin Automatics West of Scotland Cup 1st round and to mark Armistice Day a minute’s silence was observed before kick-off.
Glenafton made one change from the starting eleven that faced Dalry Thistle in the Scottish Junior Cup victory over Dalry Thistle with central Iain McKnight replacing captain Craig Menzies suffering from a back injury. The Girvan side included former Glenafton striker Michael Reilly while on the bench was defender Andrew Hunter currently on loan from the Glens.
The visitors got off to a great start after Michael Reilly capitalised on a slack defensive pass wide on the left to steal the ball and drive deep into the box to fire an angled shot which saw the ball take a deflection off a defender before bulging the back of the net. Seasiders up 1-0 with two minutes gone.
Glenafton responded well in terms of possession and attacking play without however creating any clear-cut chances particularly from corner-kicks and a series of free-kicks won in the visitors’ half. Indeed, the home side survived a scare after a long clearance by keeper Brian McGarrity was gathered by Jack McDowall and from the half-way line launched the ball for goal only for Ally Park to get back and kill it dead with his chest a few yards from the goal-line.
Back came Glens through Jamie McKernon picking up a pass from Joe Andrew to force his way to the bye-line and cut the ball back for Dale Moore only for his shot from 12 yards to be blocked by Michael Mossie. With the box packed Park then tried to curl a shot from 22 yards only for it to dip over the bar. On 17 minutes Kyle McAusland floated a great ball into the six yard box where Moore got in behind the defender to hook a goal-bound shot that keeper Scott Johnstone did well to get down low and punch it away with both fists.
Girvan then enjoyed a good spell which saw Craig Reid pick up a pass in space but his attempt to curl the ball into the top corner was well off target. Reilly then caught the Glens defence on the hop and advanced to the edge of the box but his shot with McKnight closing in lacked the power to test McGarrity. Paul Cameron and Scott Dinwoodie came out on top in a game of head-tennis in the centre circle with Reilly picking up the loose ball to slip a defence splitting pass to Robert Patterson who seemingly beat the offside trap to run into the box unchallenged before squaring the ball for the incoming Craig Reid to guide the ball home from 6 yards out before clattering into the post to delay his celebrations. Girvan 2-0 up with 28 minutes gone.
Any concussion Reid suffered was short-lived for two minutes he extended the visitors lead. Play maker Paul Cameron whipped a free kick from the right into the heart of the six-yard box and although McGarrity managed to punch it clear from Reilly’s head an attempt to clear the loose ball saw it crash of the bar and there was Reid at the back post to head it into the empty net from two yards.
A stunned Glens gathered themselves and won a corner-kick from the kick-off only for this to be headed clear again by central defender Darren Mitchell. The ball was quickly recovered and McKernon’s chip into the box was met by a powerful downward header by McChesney which the alert Johnstone got down low to hold at the base of the post.
McDowall replied for the visitors with a powerful run down the left before cutting into the box with a trio of defenders on his tail and as he geared to shoot the covering Alan Cairns made a goal saving tackle at the expense of a corner kick which was cleared to safety.
Back came the hosts and McKernon found Andrew in the box who held off Mitchell before wheeling and shooting for goal but again the keeper was not be bettered. Unable to fashion a shot from within a crowded penalty box Andrew rolled the ball back to Park who in turn set up McAusland to blast a shot from 25 yards that Johnstone pushed away and Stephen Auld mopped up the loose ball.
On 41 minutes Mitchell impeded Andrew on the edge of the box, 6 inches the wrong side for a spot kick for the home side. The free kick was blocked by the wall and the remnants of which also blocked the Glens next as they continued to struggle to manufacture a clean shot at goal. A final raid before half-time was repelled by a stubborn defence and Park was forced to try from 22 yards sending a low show whizzing wide of the post.
H/T Glens 0 Girvan 3
Glens began the second half on the front foot but penetrating the Girvan box was still proving difficult although McKernon did manage to muscle his way past Cameron and Dinwoodie at the expense of losing control of the ball which was booted clear by Mark Doolan. Soon after McKernon’s corner-kick was cleared initiating a Girvan break that ended with Reilly’s shot from inside the box being comfortably saved by McGarrity.
On 57 minutes Mitchell wrestled Andrew to ground in the box but claims for a penalty fell on deaf ears and Girvan came close to rubbing salt in the wounds with a quick break that ended with McGarrity pulling off a brilliant save from Patterson’s close-range header. Within a minute the Glens turned what could have been a 0-4 scoreline to one of 1-3 when Cairns from wide on the left fired the ball to the edge of the six-yard box where Ryan Borris got the jump on Doolan to head past Johnstone on 58 minutes.
The midfielder was then replaced by striker Chris Dallas as Glens set out to salvage something from the game with half an hour to go.
Girvan look rattled as Glens went on the offensive with Park’s header from inside the box looping over the bar and a minute later the midfielder forced the keeper into a brave save as he slid and tried to guide home an Andrew pass. A Glens corner kick was cleared and the counter-attack ended with McDowall’s shot at goal being easily held by McGarrity. Back came the Glens on 63 minutes. Dallas outjumped Mitchell to head the ball onto Andrew on the outskirts of the box who squared the ball for the inrushing Moore to burst into the box and round the advancing keeper only to leave to a tight an angle and his shot drifted wide of the empty goal. Park then hit another sweet strike from 22 yards but against Johnstone was his match and clutched the ball cleanly.
The home side’s pressing was relentless although Girvan looked lively on the break with a Patterson low angled shot forcing another save from McGarrity. On 70 minutes Girvan brought on Marc Cameron for Jack McDowall while soon after Glens replaced Mick McCann with David Gray.
Chris Dallas lashed a low vicious shot from the left-hand side of the box and although it beat the keeper at full stretch the ball sneaked wide of the far post. Glens one-way traffic continued to face congestion in the Girvan box but gaps were now appearing that fostered a faint glimmer of hope.
McKernon slipped a super pass to Moore on the right to whip the ball into the box and when it fell for Andrew there wasn’t a defender within 5 yards allowing the striker time to turn and thump a shot only for man-of-the-match Johnstone to pull off another great save to push the ball round the post.
McKernon’s corner was fired low to McChesney on the six yard line and as the defender set up to redirect the ball goalward Dinwoodie won the ball with a crunching tackle and while players turned to look at the referee for a whistle that never came, meanwhile Dinwoodie picked himself up to clear the loose ball. A minute later Andrew gathered the ball on the right hand corner of the box and rolled it back out to Gray to drill a low shot that was cleared by Mitchell’s outstretched leg sending the ball spinning to the left hand side of the ‘D’ where it was snapped up by Kyle McAusland to arrow an unstoppable shot past the helpless keeper. Glens now a goal behind with 6 minutes to go.
McAusland forward pass to Andrew was knocked on to allow Park to burst into the box and advance to the corner of the six yard box and having drawn the keeper from his line he squared the ball for Dallas only for his effort to miss the target and the ball cleared to safety.
With four minutes remaining Girvan brought on Andrew Hunter for Mark Doolan as they looked to see out the game, however attack almost turned into the best form of defence when Reid cut in from the right to drill a low shot that beat McGarrity but Park was on hand to clear the danger.
In the last-minute of the regulation 90 minutes the tireless Dinwoodie headed the ball clear of the box which fell at the feet of McAusland and Gray, the later thumping It first time sending the ball seemingly to herald a penalty shoot-out only for the airborne Johnstone to pull off the save of the match and tip the ball wide for corner kick. Gray’s kick was then won in the air by Park but his header sailed over the bar.
Deep into stoppage time and Girvan replaced Michael Reilly with David Cunningham and two minutes later the referee’s whistle went to end an eventful cup tie.
F/T Glens 2 Girvan 3