- Sat 16 NOV 2019 KO 1:45 pm
- McBookie.com West Region Premiership| Match 14
- Loch Park, New Cumnock
- Glenafton Athletic 3 (2) |McCann, Gallacher, Andrew
- Auchinleck Tabot 0 (0)
THREE OF THE BEST FROM THE GLENS
Glenafton made seven changes to the eleven that started against Larkhall Thistle last Saturday. In came David Wilson, Craig Pettigrew, Alan Cairns, Ally Park, Mick McCann, Lee Gallacher and Matthew Reilly for Craig Burns, Kyle McAusland, Edward Campbell, Cameron Marlow, Joe Andrew, Dan Orsi and Ryan Nisbet.
Champions Auchinleck Talbot arrived at Loch Park unbeaten in the league since Kyle McAusland’s goal secured all three points for the Glens at Beechwood back in early October 2018. Of course, the two sides have already met in the league this season with the Talbot beating 10 men Glens 4-1 at home.
Former Talbot striker Mick McCann kicked off for the Glens and 23 seconds later he was celebrating the opening goal. Twice the Glens had played the ball upfield only for it to be returned to their half. Third time lucky and Craig Pettigrew clipped the ball high upfield for McCann only for Neill McPherson to cut it out with a header which sent the ball high into the air back towards the edge of the penalty box. Although the defender tried to chase it down McCann beat both him and Willie Lyle to meet the ball on its descent and hit it on the drop high over the head of keeper Andy Leishman, now beyond his six yard box, and into the inviting open net.
Five minutes later a long throw from Talbot deep into the box was headed clear by Ryan McChesney where the ball fell kindly for Mark Shankland at the edge of the box to thump a low shot through a ruck of players that was blocked before being kicked out for a corner kick, which came to nothing.
Back came Glens through Gallacher who after gathering McCann’s knock-on cleverly switched play from left to right where Matthew Reilly got the better of Lyle in the box to cut the ball back across the six-yard line and McCann beat McCracken to the jump only for his header to loop high over the bar.
On 9 minutes Alan Cairns and Keir Samson challenged for a loose ball in the centre circle which bounced free again and as McChesney chased it down Gareth Armstrong’s sliding tackle took the legs from the big defender. Following a quick consultation with his assistant the referee showed the offender a red card and Talbot were down to 10 men. Although McChesney played on for a time he failed to recover from the tackle and was replaced 8 minutes later. On came Cameron Marlow to take Ally Park’s place in midfield who took up the right full back slot with Craig Pettigrew now partnering Craig Menzies at the centre of defence.
Glens took full advantage of the extra man with Findlay Frye, Dale Moore and Marlow bossing midfield. They were patient in the build up with sharp passing on a difficult surface and using both flanks to great effect. After stringing 4 or 5 passes together Reilly was released down the left leaving Lyle in his wake before clipping the ball into the box where McCann got in front of McCracken only for his header to go high and wide.
Soon after Marlow picked out Moore in the middle of the park who side stepped Samson before driving forward and drilling a low shot from 25 yards that was comfortably collected by Leishman.
On 21 minutes the home side earned their first corner kick of the match which was delightfully delivered by Gallacher to the edge of the six yard box where former Talbot player Pettigrew got the jump on Dwayne Hyslop to bullet a header only for Leishman to throw himself across the face of goal and pull off a wonderful save to push the net-bound ball away before Graham Wilson took no chances and headed it wide to safety.
The corner that followed was caught cleanly by the towering keeper who quickly initiated a counter attack with a long throw out for Shankland to chase down the left before cutting inside but their usual zip and slick interplay up front was deserting the visitors and the pass intended for Wilson went astray.
In stark contrast Cairns snapped up the loose ball on the outskirts of the Glens box and an inch perfect forward diagonal pass to Gallacher saw the winger cut in-field before taking two Talbot midfielders out of play out with a terrific threaded ball for Moore to drive to the edge of the “D” before feeding Reilly on the overlap on the left where although S. Wilson hemmed him in at the corner he wriggled free to get the ball back to Frye in the middle of the park to set up a second wave of attack which concluded with Pettigrew hitting a low shot from 25 yards that was well held by Leishman.
On 26 minutes Talbot showed their teeth through G. Wilson’s pace down the right and as Menzies closed him down at the edge of the box, he whipped a ball to the back post for the incoming Shankland only for Wilson to intercept and clutch safely with both hands.
A minute later the Glens doubled their advantage with a fantastic box-to-box move and an equally fantastic finish. Frye and Reilly doubled team to rob S. Wilson off the ball on the outskirts of the box near the corner flag with Frye coming away with the ball before slipping it down the left flank for Reilly, now just inside the Talbot half, where with a flick of the outside of his boot he left two Talbotians flat-footed and completed his one-two with Frye. Now on the outskirts of the left hand-side of the Talbot box the Glens dynamo faced with the choice of taking on McPherson or picking out McCann in the box who was being tightly marked by Pope, instead Frye opted to poke the ball to the far side of the box for the inrushing Lee Gallacher with time and space to tee up and curl a peach of a ball beyond the reach of the airborne Leishman and into the far corner of the net.
The goal, as did the previous one, spurred Auchinleck into action through a trademark burst of speed by G. Wilson down the left before firing a pinpoint pass to match Samson’s run into the far side of the box to set up the striker to lash a low angled shot that pulled off a super save from keeper Wilson at his near post, pushing the ball across the face of goal. The danger was not over as G. Wilson rushed past a group of Glens’ defenders to force the ball over the line but with the use of a hand; no goal.
The best of the remaining efforts on goal from open play fell to the Glens. On 35 minutes Moore picked out Gallacher on the right flank who tried his luck with a low shot from outside the box that Leishman did well to get down to stop and hold at his near post. Ten minutes later the same player, from the same position, tried again only on this occasion he aimed for the top corner of the back post forcing Leishman to leap and pluck the ball out the air. At the other end a good run by G. Wilson ended with him blasting a shot from 20 yards well over the bar.
Talbot finished the first half action with a Shankland free kick from just outside the right hand corner of the box that was headed clear by Pettigrew.
HT Glens 2 Talbot 0
Talbot made a change at the break with Kieran Healy replacing Mark Shankland.
Talbot came out the traps full of intent and won a free kick wide on the right which was floated into box and appeared to be headed wide by McCracken but adjudged to take a touch of Pettigrew. The corner that followed was headed well wide by Hyslop.
Glens responded with Reilly breaking down the left and slipping a forward pass to Moore to progress to the touchline where Pope’s tackle earned Glens a corner-kick from which Talbot won a free kick after a foul by McCann.
On 56 minutes Pope’s free kick from wide on the right took a bounce outside the box and as Frye stooped to head the ball a crescendo of Talbot arms raised systematically appealing for a hand ball but the referee was well placed to deny their appeals. Play continued and the ball quickly returned high into the box by McKinlay which was punched clear by Wilson and the ball deflected into the path of Lyle who lashed a shot from inside the box that was blocked by Cairns.
Glens countered and after a string of passes Marlow’s shot from 30 yards sailed over the bar. On the hour mark Glens brought on Dan Orsi for Lee Gallacher, the wing man leaving to a well-earned applause. Soon after Moore chipped a ball into the box and although Frye got between McCracken and Lyle to win the ball his header drifted well wide.
Talbot responded through G.Wilson, now threatening every time he had the ball, chasing down a long ball from Leishman before whipping it to the back post where although Samson got the jump on Cairns his header was easily held by Wilson. The Auchinleck side enjoyed a good spell of pressure that earned them a series of free-kicks and corners that were repelled in turn by the Glens defence; they also introduced Bryan Boylan for Keir Samson during this period.
On 70 minutes Ally Park clipped a ball from the half-way line down the right for McCann to chase and after holding off McCracken he slipped the ball to Moore who broke into the box and weaved past Hyslop and McKinlay before curling a shot from close range that Leishman held safely.
More joy down the right when Orsi released McCann and then set off for the box to complete the one-two before cutting the ball back for the incoming Reilly to drill a low shot from 14 yards that was deflected wide; but no corner given.
On 76 minutes Glens made their final change with Mick McCann applauded off the park as Joe Andrew took his place. Talbot too made their last substitution with Jamie Glasgow replacing Dwayne Hyslop.
The visitors enjoyed another period of pressure as they tried to salvage something from the game but found young keeper David Wilson in a determined mood to keep a clean sheet. Boylan picked out G.Wilson in a busy box who shook of two defenders to slip a short pass to Glasgow and as he teed up to shoot from a few yards out Wilson spread his body to make a fine block and send the ball wide of target; the corner that followed was cleared at the near post by Frye.
Talbot continued to press and Pope’s free kick into the box initiated a series of attempts to break down the home rear-guard with no success. A ball from wide on the right was then launched into the box which was headed on by G. Wilson and chased down by Boylan in space at the back post where the alert Wilson rushed from his line and his timely slide tackle sent the ball out for a corner.
This was partially cleared and saw Talbot win another free kick which was headed clear by Park and set up a blistering counter attack started by Frye with excellent interventions from from Reilly, Andrew and Moore before finishing with Frye’s shot from 22 yards taking a slight deflection before Leishman saved well.
The keeper then launched the ball upfield to the edge of the Glens box where Pettigrew headed it back up towards the centre of circle where Orsi killed it with his chest and Moore snapped up the loose ball before driving through the middle and although McPherson cut out his pass to Reilly the youngster prevented Lyle from gathering the ball and instead it sat up for Joe Andrew to thunder an unstoppable shot from 22 yards past Leishman at full stretch and in off the inside of the back post. Glens now 3-0 up on 82 minutes.
Credit to Talbot they continued to try an eke out a consolation and a minute into added time they came close to doing so. Healey from wide on the left whipped a great ball into the six yard box where Boylan leapt high to power a header destined to burst the net only for Wilson to somehow claw the ball out the air before Park booted it clear; the young keeper earning well deserved handshakes from his fellow defenders.
FT Glens 3 Talbot 0
GLENAFTON ATHLETIC: 1. David Wilson 2. Craig Pettigrew 3. Alan Cairns 4. Craig Menzies 5. Ryan McChesney ( 15. Cameron Marlow) 6. Ally Park 7. Dale Moore 8. Findlay Frye 9. Mick McCann (12. Joe Andrew) 10. Lee Gallacher (14. Dan Orsi) 11. Matthew Reilly Subs 16. 17. Ryan Nisbet 18. Craig Burns (gk)
AUCHINLECK TALBOT: 1. Andy Leishman 2. William Lyle 3. Gordon Pope 4. Neill McPherson 5. Craig McCracken 6. Gareth Armstrong 7. Dwaye Hyslop 8. Stephen Wilson (12. Jamie Glasgow) 9. Graham Wilson 10. Keir Samson (14. Bryan Boylan) 11. Mark Shankland (15. Kieran Healy). Subs: 16. Jack McDowall 17. Aiden Wilson.