Glenafton 1 Rossvale 2

PDM Buildbase WOSFL | Match 1623/10/2021
KO 200 pm
Loch Park, New Cumnock
Glenafton Athletic 1 (0)Blyth
Rossvale2 (2)Dolan, Kerr

Glenafton’s unbeaten run of 5 league games (a draw followed by 4 wins) came to an end on Saturday after the proverbial game of two halves with Rossvale scoring twice in the first and Glens pulling one back in the second.

Glens made two changes to the side that started against Kello Rovers last Saturday with Brian McGarrity and Ross Fisher coming in for Scott Johnson and Gregor Fotheringham. 

The two sides met each other on league business only 3 weeks ago, however with both having a free Saturday away from cup football, today’s fixture was agreed at short notice. Perhaps as a consequence the referee was not accompanied by assistant match officials and volunteers, one from each team, held the flags.

Big Jim’s back

The sides were evenly matched in the early encounters, each winning a corner kick that came to nothing.  From open play Rossvale’s Robbie Torrance deep on the left launched a ball into the box that the lively Rico Diack was a hair’s breadth from getting a head to it before the ball slipped wide of the post. For Glens, Ross Fisher took the bull by the horns to drive forward and play a neat one-two with David Blyth to continue his run into the box only to be robbed of the ball on the touchline by Dillon Young.

On 14 minutes Rossvale took the lead after Hugh Kerr picked up the ball midway into the Glens half and with his way to goal blocked clipped the ball wide to James Dolman who with quick feet skipped past two men before cutting inside to curl a shot from the edge of the box that keeper Brian McGarrity at full stretch appeared to have it covered only for it to take a bounce and finish in the back of the net.

Glens responded well through Darren Curtis threading a ball for Sam McKee to break into the box, shaking one defender off before Young, with another well-timed tackle, stripped the ball from the striker some 8 yards from goal.  The home side continued to press and a long throw from Sean Bennie was headed out for a corner-kick at the near post by Conor Morgan under pressure from Ollie Rowe. Rossvale cleared the corner-kick and countered with a quick attack down the left which ended with Dolman picking out Diack in the middle to drive into the box and after being forced wide by Craig Pettigrew he whipped a dangerous ball across the face of goal just beyond the reach of the incoming Euan Rodger.

The visitors were producing all the fluent play on show and were soon on the front foot again. Kerr and Dolman combined down the left before switching the ball to Torrance breaking into the right-hand side of the box where he rolled the ball back to Mikey McWilliams only for Rowe to block his shot. Back came Vale with McWilliams releasing Torrance down the right to whip another wicked ball into the box that Kerr just failed to meet as Rowe challenged. 

Rossvale doubled their lead on 22 minutes with a wonderfully worked goal. A long clearance up the park from McGarrity was headed out from the edge of the box by Ross Urquhart, hooked on by Torrance and the flicked on by the head of Diack at the half-way line.  Rodger gathered the ball but with no way through returned it to Diack to lay it off inside to McWilliams who quickly picked out Urquhart in the centre-circle and from here he pushed forward before stroking a 15-yard pass to Hugh Kerr on the outskirts of the box and as Urquhart continued his run to complete the one-two, Kerr instead turned and leathered a low unstoppable shot from 22 yards past McGarrity at full stretch.

Glens mustered a response with several half-chances. Both Murphy and McKee had shots from within the box blocked by Morgan while Fisher then had another determined run through the middle before drilling a low shot from 25 yards out that drifted wide of the far post.

On 32 minutes were forced in to a change with Aaron Miller coming off to be replaced by player-manager Mick McCann.

The visitors were soon back on the front foot playing fast flowing football. The impressive Josh Hogg, from the centre circle in his own half, picked out Rodger on the outskirts of the box who laid it off to McWilliams and after giving a couple of defenders the slip struck a low shot from 22 yards which McGarrity got down low to stop and then quickly reacted to punch the ball from the feet of Kerr looking for the tap in.

Brian McGarrity beats Hugh Kerr to the ball

Attacks down both flanks quickly followed.  Diack and McWilliams combined down the right to set up Young to whip a cross to the back post up where Kerr just failed to connect.  While down the left Dolman played a slick one-two with Rodger clipping the ball into box where claims that it had struck a Glens arm fell on deaf ears before Pettigrew cleared the danger.

In the closing minutes of the half McCann won a free-kick on the left-hand corner of the penalty-box and although the McKee’s kick beat the two-man wall the ball fell into the safe hands of keeper Craig Gordon. Blyth then floated another free-kick into a busy box that was won in the air by Fisher only for the header to drift wide of the post.

At the other end Rossvale quickly switched play from the right wing to the left for Dolman to whip another great ball to the near post only for McGarrity to clutch cleanly at the feet of Kerr. The keeper launched a long ball up the park where although McCann got the jump on Morgan in the box Gordon rushed from his line to punch the ball away from the striker’s head.

HT Glens 0 Rossvale 2

Early signs were not good for the home side as Rossvale were first to show after the restart through Diack breaking the down the right and then cutting into the box before lashing a shot that whizzed inches over the bar. However, from that point on the home side took control of the second half.

Blyth’s powerful run down the right won Glens a corner that Blyth clipped into the box where Pettigrew’s volley was deflected off target and then cleared by Hogg.

Soon after, Gordon’s high goal kick was won in the centre circle by Fisher and his header then flicked on by McCann with a cute back heel to release Murphy to break into the box only for his cut-back for the incoming McCann to be intercepted by Gordon. Darren Curtis then cleverly broke down a Rossvale attack in midfield before driving forward and hitting a low shot from 25 yards that the keeper held comfortably.

On 53 minutes the Glens pressure paid off. McGarrity rushed from his line to pluck a free kick floated into the box and immediately launched it upfield where it was trapped by McCann and promptly laid off to Blyth who pushed it wide back to McCann now on the right-hand side of the box. Holding off one defender before nutmegging a second and as a third closed in McCann casually slipped the ball to David Blyth who took a touch with his right and in a flash lashed a left-footed thunderbolt from 16 yards into the net.

A minute later the Glens passed up a great chance to draw level. Pettigrew cut out a Rossvale pass into the box and instantly picked out McKee wide on the left where he turned his marker before bursting up the wing and then clipping a perfectly weighted forward pass for Murphy to knock it first time into the path of the incoming McCann to kill with his right foot and seemingly certain to stroke it home from six yards with his left, only for the ball to sneak wide of the post.

Lots of ‘hands on heads’ but the Glens heads didn’t go down as they continued to press for the equaliser.

Mick McCann close to drawing the sides level

Alan Cairns sent a high cross into the box that McCann chested the ball back out Fisher but his effort from the edge of the “D” flew high over the bar.

The visitors made the occasional visit to the Glens box, more often than not from a set-piece play which typically would conclude with the home side mounting a counter-attack.

On 64 minutes Sean Bennie’s long throw into the six-yard box was headed back toward the edge of the box by Morgan where Bennie gathered and clipped high into the packed box where McCann’s volley from six yards out dipped over the bar; claims it was deflected over by Young waved away.

Rossvale made a double substitution with Diack and McWilliams having both put in a good shifts were replaced by Micky Mallon and new signing Sam Ghoul.

Glens continued to press against a determined performance from back-to-the-walls Vale and clear-cut chances were hard to find, however on 74 minute they were foiled by a super save from Gordon. Blyth floated a corner-kick into a jam-packed six yard box where the ball popped out and fell for Murphy and although his first attempt from 10 yards was blocked by Torrance, his second deflected off Kerr and the ball seemed destined for the back of the net but the quick-footed Gordon set up to dive to the right, dived to the left at full stretch to push the ball to safety.  

The visitors enjoyed a brief spell of respite with possession in the Glens half without fashioning any efforts at goal.

Scott Sherrie replaced David Blyth n 78 minutes with the young goal scorer departing to well-earned applause from the home support.

Glens were back on the front foot and Fisher slotted a through ball for Murphy to chase down in the box only for his cut back to be headed past his own post by Young and Gordon clutched the resulting corner. Soon after Rowe picked out Bennie on the right hand side to curl a ball into heart of the box for the incoming McCann to beat Young to the ball only for his shot to dip over the bar. Sherrie then clipped a free kick into the box and although McCann got the jump on his marker his header slipped wide of the post.

On 84 minutes Sherrie’s corner-kick was met at the edge of the six-yard box by Pettigrew to guide the ball goalward only for Gordon to block with his feet with Fisher in close attention. McKee pounced on the loose ball but his shot from 4 yards out was clawed away a yard from the goal-line by the alert goalie who then cut out McKee’s attempted cut-back with an outstretched leg before finally clutching McKee’s third attempt to fashion the equaliser.

Rossvale took great heart from Gordon’s heroics and defended and attacked in equal measure to see out the game and claim the three points.

FT Glens 1 Rossvale 2

1. Brian McGarrity 2. Sean Bennie 4. Ollie Rowe 6. Craig Pettigrew (c ) 3. Alan Cairns; 10. Aaron Miller (13. Mick McCann) 5. Ross Fisher 8. Darren Curtis 11. David Blyth; (16. Scott Sherrie) 9. Leon Murphy 7. Sam McKee. Subs 12. Calum Thomson 21. Scott Johnson (gk)
1.Craig Gordon 2. Robbie Torrance 3. Josh Hogg 4. Conor Morgan 5. Dillon Young 6. Ross Urquhart (c ) 7. Rico Diack (16. Mikey Mallon) 8. Euan Rodger 9. Hugh Kerr 10. Mikey McWilliams (17. Sam Ghoul) 11. James Dolan Subs 13. Josh Doherty (gk) 14. Danny Mefford 15. A. Johnstone
Glenafton Athletic v Rossvale
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