The Warriors had as dream start in this game at Galabank but as seems to the norm in league games between Annan and Stenhousemuir the points were eventually shared [every game at Annan has been a 1-1 draw].
Stenhousemuir took the lead in the fifth minute through a Mark McGuigan strike when he latched on to a pinpoint through ball by Ruaridh Donaldson to slid the ball past the advancing Jim Aitkinson.
A couple of minutes later he once again eluded his marker but this time although the shot had power it was jiust over the bar. Stenhousemuir were certainly on top in the opening stages with Annan fairly slow to start but the home side gradually came into the game and Aiden Smith created a chance when he spun past Ross Dunlop but brother Mike was able to block the strike for a corner kick. At the other end Jimmy Scott did well to direct a Ross Meechan cross goalwards but unfortunately for the Warrior it was straight at the keeper. Atkinson was called into action once again to save a Donaldson free-kick in the 33rd minute but this was a prelude to Annan’s best spell of the game so far. Rabin Omar was unlucky to see a header spin off a Stenhousemuir defender for a corner which Steve Swinglehurst headed over before Omar had another couple of attempts at goal in quick succession. This was followed by an Owen Moxon run where he took advantage of the defence backing off and his curled strike went just past the post. Annan would have been happy with their response but at the half time interval Stenhousemuir were still winning.
In the 50th minute of the game Stenhousemuir almost extended their lead. Ryan Sinnamon was pressurised on the ball by Jamie Longworth and he won possession before setting up McGuigan with a clever back heel. The on-form striker hit a first time effort that beat the keeper but struck the far post. Scott and McGuigan then had further attempts but were off target.
The home side once again came back into the game and Sinnamon hit a powerful effort in the 63rd minute that Chris Smith was able to save. He was unable to keep a clean sheet though as Annan equalised from the penalty spot after Swinglehurst had been fouled by McGuigan as he attempted to defend a long free kick from the keeper.
In the dying minutes of the game it was the visitors who almost secured victory with McGuigan being in the thick of it. He unusually missed a good opportunity when he advanced into the box but took an extra touch and lost control when a first time strike may have brought rewards and with the last move of the game he went down in the box under a challenge. There were strong vocal appeals for a penalty from the Stenhousemuir players but in the end the final arbiter was referee Colin Steven who dismissed the claims and promptly blew for full time.
This game saw Innes Murray make his debut on loan from Hibernian when he came off the bench and he looked to be a player of promise. Stenhousemuir will feel that they missed out on the three points as Chris Smith was rarely troubled but an aberration gave Annan their chance and they took it.
|September 16, 2017||3:00 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 2||2017/18||90'|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|
|9. McGuigan, Mark||5'|