- McBookie West Region Super League Premier Division
- Match 06
- Loch Park, New Cumnock
- Saturday 23rd December 2017
- GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 4 (2)
- Chris Dallas, Ally Park, Darren McGill, Mick McCann
- KIRKINTILLOCH ROB ROY 0 (0)
A minute’s silence was held before kick off in memory of Glenafton supporter Maurice Hanlon who passed away on Wednesday after a long illness and he will be sadly missed at Loch Park.
Glenafton made two changes to the starting eleven that lost out to Rob Roy last Saturday in the Scottish Junior Cup with David Gray and Chris Dallas coming in for Dale Moore and Mick McCann. The visitors made four changes from their starting line up with Daniel O’Halloran, Stefan Law, Andrew Johnstone and Gary Carroll replacing Gary McMenamin, Gary McCulloch, Gavin Mackie and Willie Sawyers.
Manager Craig McEwan was looking for a reaction following the holders exit from the Scottish Junior Cup as the reigning Premier Divisions champions faced what was only their sixth game of the league campaign. Southy hadn’t long to wait as Chris Dallas picked a defence splitting pass from Joe Andrew to burst into the box and round the advancing keeper before lashing the ball into the net; Glens 1-0 up after six minutes.
Rabs raced upfield to earn a corner kick which was headed clear by Ryan McChesney as Danny Boyle challenged.
Played ebbed back and forth with the home side kicking into a strong wind. On 13 minutes Ryan Borris from just inside the Rabs’ box held off defender Scott Walker to lay off the ball for Ally Park only for his shot to fly wide of the post. Ten minutes later Gary Carroll in a packed penalty box picked out Joe Slattery and his low drive was comfortably held by keeper Brian McGarrity.
Back up the park and defender Daniel McKenzie grappled with Joe Andrew tight on the right flank before taking the feet from the striker. After the yellow card was shown David Gray floated a free-kick into the six-yard box which sclaffed off the head of Walker and the ball fell kindly for McChesney at the far corner of the six-yard box but the big defender fired wide of the back post.
Glens continued to press with Jamie McKernon and Gray bossing the middle of the park. Alan Cairns and Borris combined before the latter’s attempt to find Dallas deep in the box was cleared by Daniel O’Halloran. The ball was quickly returned to the danger area and as keeper Steven McNeil rushed to the penalty spot to gather Boyle opted to head clear only for the ball to fall for Ally Park on the edge of the “D” and from 22 yards he wonderfully volleyed the ball into the beckoning net to double the Glens lead on 26 minutes.
The Afton tails were up and McChesney launched a long ball upfield from deep on the left to McAusland wide on the right and the full back burst forward before whipping the ball into the goalmouth where Park’s touch sent the ball inches wide.
On 31 minutes Shaun Fraser clipped the heels of Dallas as the Rabs conceded another free-kick on the outskirts of the box. Gray’s kick was headed clear and played back into the box by McAusland only for the ball to be cleared again at the expense of a corner-kick. The ball eventually fell to McChesney and his shot for goal before McAusland’s attempt to fire home rebound through a ruck of players was cleared off the line by the well place McKenzie.
The home side continued to look the more threatening with the Rabs showing as an attacking force in glimpses but crosses into the Glens box were easily mopped up by McChesney and Craig Menzies. Five minutes from the break and Fraser picked up a yellow card for persistent fouling. In the last action of the half the midfielder went down easily in the box albeit from a offside position. The incident generated a heated exchange of views and Fraser did not appear for the second half after receiving a second yellow-card for a ‘stamp’ on the toes of a Glens player on the way to pavilion.
H/T Glens 2 Rabs 0
With two minutes of the restart McNeil did well to get down low and push Borris’s angled shot wide for a corner kick which was whipped wickedly across the face of goal to the back post where McAusland tried in vain to keep the ball in play. Two minutes later McKernon stole the ball on the half way line and spotting the keeper off his line he launched an audacious shot for the empty net. The back-tracking McNeil was relieved to see the ball re-enter Loch Park’s atmosphere and clipped the back of the cross-bar and splash down on the roof the net.
Gray then picked a pass from Park before floating the ball into the box for Dallas to beat Boyle the jump but his header was comfortably by the goalie.
On the hour mark Rob Roy made a double substitution with Willie Sawyers and Lee Gallacher replacing Andrew Johnstone and Joe Slattery. The Glens quickly followed suit and brought on Dale Moore and Darren McGill for David Gray and Ryan Borris; both leaving to well-deserved applause.
Moore was soon in the thick of the action with an exhilarating run down the right that saw him skip past Rab after Rab to force his way to the corner of six yard and his shot pull off a super two-handed save from McNeil.
Sawyers too had made an impact winning a hat-trick of free-kicks. One of these aimed for him in the heart of the box was headed clear by McAusland and the ball snapped up by Moore to drive through the middle before firing a shot from 25 yards that flew wide of the post. A minute later Sawyers brought McGill from behind to concede a free kick from 25 yards out. Up stepped Darren McGill and cracked a vicious kick that beat McNeil and crashed off the underside of the bar with the ball appearing to cross the line (the linesman heading for the half way line) however Chris Dallas was on hand to head home from 4 yards out as the keeper was still trying to get back on his feet. Glens 3-0 up against 10 men after 66 minutes.
The Rabs surrendered the ball from the kick off and the home side won a corner kick that was booted clear by Boyle. On 70 minutes Glenafton made their final substitution with Joe Andrew coming off to an appreciative applause to make way for Mick McCann who soon after came within inches of connecting with a wicked ball whipped into the six-yard box by Moore; the winger’s mesmerising runs exasperating the 10 men.
With 15 minutes to go Kirkintilloch made their final change with Stefan Law making way for Gavin Mackie.
Glenafton continued to attack in waves and a great run down the right by McCann took him to the by-line only for his cut back for Dallas to by cut out by an outstretched leg of the keeper. McGill and Dallas combined before picking out Mick McCann on the left-hand side of the box where he gave Walker the slip before wheeling to drill a low angled drive that whizzed by the wrong-footed McNeil to make it 4-0 on 78 minutes.
The traffic was all but one-way during the remainder of the game with McGill shooting wide before sending another shot from outside the box dipping over the bar. McAusland then shot wide and soon after McNeil pulled off another decent save from Park’s powerful shot from inside the box.
With two minutes to go Rabs were reduced to 9 men after Walker earned a second yellow card from a foul on the outskirts of the box. A minute later and an exasperated O’Halloran hacked down Moore on another blistering run to leave the referee little choice to send the young defender off.
On a day the club opened their new turnstyle the team turned on the style to secure all three points from a thoroughly convincing win.
FT Glens 4 Rabs 0
Glenafton Athletic: 1. Brian McGarrity 2. Kyle McAusland 3. Alan Cairns 4. Craig Menzies Ryan McChesney 6. Jamie McKernon 7. David Gray (14 Dale Moore 8. Ally Park 9. Chris Dallas 10. Joe Andrew (12. Mick McCann) 11. Ryan Borris (16. Darren McGill) Subs Not Used: 15.Connor Lynass 17. Scott Watson (gk)
Kirkintilloch Rob Roy: 1. Stephen McNeil 2. Scott Walker 3. Daniel McKenzie 4. Daniel O’Halloran 5. Daniel Boyle 6. Stefan Law (16. Gavin Mackie) 7. Andrew Johnstone (9. Willie Sawyers) 8. Shaun Fraser 15. Gary Carroll 10. Kevin Watt 11. Joe Slattery (12. Lee Gallacher ) Subs Not Used: 14. Gary McCulloch 17. Michael Morris