Stenhousemuir 1 v 3 Brechin City
Played at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on Saturday, 30th April 2011 at 15:00
Stenhousemuir v Brechin City at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on 30.4.11
Irn Bru Scottish Second Division Att 672
Stenhousemuir 1 [Devlin 26] Brechin City 3 [McAllister 4 pen, 45, 90 pen]
Stenhousemuir went into this game buoyed by the victory at Alloa the previous week that meant that they still had a chance to escape the play-offs. They started the game with a couple of changes from that victory with Scott Dalziel returning to the starting eleven for youngster Stuart Love and Brian Gilmour replacing Iain Thomson who was ill.
Brechin had a key change in personnel as top scorer Rory McAllister returned after suspension and he was to have a major impact on this game. Indeed he set the tempo for the game right from kickoff and he tested Chris McCluskey in the home goal with an effort within the first minute. McCluskey on this occasion made a fine one handed stop and with the rebound ex-Warrior Craig Molloy’s effort went just past the post.
This was a real let off for the home side but they were not to remain on level terms for long. McCluskey was deemed to have brought down McAllister in the box three minutes later and the Brechin hitman converted the spot kick to put the visitors into the lead. McCluskey was cautioned for the foul though if the referee thought it was a penalty then he was lucky to stay on the park as he undoubtedly stopped a goal scoring opportunity.
Stenhousemuir had their own claims for a penalty waived away in the 7th minute when Ewan Moyes appeared to catch Eric Paton with an elbow inside the box but no foul was forthcoming. Simon Lynch should have done better with a chance in the 16th minute but steered a header the wrong side of the post.
The Warriors drew level in the 26th minute and once again there was some controversy about the goal. A Stevie Murray corner was met by Michael Devlin and his powerful header was adjudged to have crossed the line by assistant Alan Newlands. It looked a tight decision though and although Brechin were aggrieved by the award of a goal they would have been down to ten men if it had not been given as Neil Janczyk had tried to stop the effort with a hand and he was cautioned for this but would have been sent off if he had succeeded.
Stenhousemuir at this point in the game deserved to be level but just before half time they were to go behind once again and this time there was no way back. Mitch Megginson made the most of a slip by a Stenhousemuir defender and when he passed to McAllister there was always going to be only one outcome and he slotted the ball past McCluskey and into the net.
Stenhousemuir came out looking for the equaliser once again but despite trying hard they always seemed to be struggling against a well organised Brechin side. That’s not to say that they didn’t have their chances with Dalziel and Grant Anderson both having at least half chances in the early stages of the second half. The Glebe Park side however looked to be more potent with their threats and in particular the Molloy and McAllister combination looked the most likely area that any other goals would come from.
In the closing stages Stenhousemuir had their best chances in the 88th and 90th minutes for Simon Lynch, the first was a header over the bar and the second when he failed to make contact but Stevie Murray almost turned that attempt into a goal when he managed to get a shot in but it hit the side netting.
In the third minute of stoppage time Molloy went down as McCluskey dived at his feet and although the keeper pled his innocence referee Kevin Clancy thought otherwise and awarded a penalty and dismissed McCluskey. McAllister converted once again scoring his and Brechin’s third goal of the game.
After that it was a dejected Stenhousemuir side that played out time knowing that being in the play offs was still a strong possibility. The only good thing being that Alloa also slipped up and this meant that there was still a chance to escape. For Brechin victory meant that they had qualified for the play offs at the other end of the table and with it a chance of promotion to the First Division.
Stenhousemuir – McCluskey [b5][so90], Lyle, Dickson [Brown 90], Thom, Devlin, Gilmour [Hunter 71], Anderson [Quinn 82], Lynch, Dalziel [b28], Paton and Murray. Subs not used – Love and Gibb.
Brechin City – Scott, Cook, McBain, McLauchlan [Whyte 89], Moyes, Janczyk [b25], Fusco, Molloy, McAllister, Megginson [Kirkpatrick 78] and Redman [b73]. Subs not used - Byers, Archdeacon and Nelson
Referee – Kevin Clancy Assistants – Alan Newlands and Lorraine Clark
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