Brora Rangers v Stenhousemuir at Dudgeon Park, Brora on 26.7.14
Petrofac Training Cup First Round Att 250
Brora Rangers 3 [Sutherland 32,92,104] Stenhousemuir 1 [Grehan 52 pen]
There were rumbles of thunder and flashes of lightening as this game started but for the Warriors there were no flashes of inspiration on the park and the rumbles of discontent at the end of the game were from a small travelling support who witnessed a poor performance from Stenhousemuir.
The long trip to Brora to play the Highland League champions was always going to be fraught with danger with the Warriors always on a hiding to nothing as they would have been expected to win by those that just looked at the opposition status without considering some of the players that they had at their disposal.
The three one defeat albeit it extra time would have been accepted but it was the manner of defeat that was galling as Brora looked the hungrier team on the day as they wanted to maintain the record of the Highland teams in this cup as Formartine had beat East Stirlingshire last season.
The Warriors line up had a mixture of old and new faces for this the first competitive game of the 14/15 season with Jack Hamilton who was transferred to Hearts as a 14 year old returning on loan from the Edinburgh side, Alan Lithgow was signed from Ayr United in the close season , whilst Jamie Reid returned for his second loan period from Dundee after a year’s absence when he played for Montrose, whilst Martin Grehan was another new start this time from Stranraer with Kris Faulds playing his first game as a purely Stenhousemuir player after his release from Falkirk. On the bench Ross Meechan had signed from Partick Thistle, Kieran Millar was a free agent after being freed last season from Hamilton Academical due to injury. He is another player who had earlier had a loan spell at the club. Paul Sludden and Ryan Millar had both joined from Stirling University with the most experienced player being Colin McMenamin who signed from Celtic Nation and will double up as development squad coach as well.
It took a while for the new look squad to gel and they handed the initative to Brora at the start of the game and Zander Sutherland gave warning of what was to come when he forced Hamilton into a fine save to keep the scores level in the 10th minute. It took Stenhousemuir until the 25th minute to create a chance but Sean Dickson failed to get power into his strike and it was comfortably saved. There was a let off for both sides just after this action with a Brora shot being deflected just wide when it could have went anywhere and then Martin Grehan struck the post from a Josh Watt corner. The home side took the lead in controversial manner in the 32nd minute when a Sutherland corner caused more problems than it should have and although it may have been cleared off the line the assistant referee thought otherwise and a goal was given and this sent the Stenhousemuir players into a state of high dudgeon. They were unable to convert their ire in the right direction and were lucky to go into the interval only a goal down with Andrew Greig seeing an effort tipped over the bar in the 45th minute.
There was another let off just after the resumption when Scott Graham missed with a header from close range in 47 minutes. It looked as if fortune was beginning to favour Stenhousemuir when they were awarded a penalty in the 52nd minute when Grehan was tripped as he made a blindside run and fired the spot kick home. The Warriors though were unable to break down the Brora defence who through the experience of Ross Tokely and Grant Munro strolled through the game whilst Colin Williamson managed to get skin of Watt and Reid who would have been creative aspects of the team. Stenhousemuir had more of the ball in the latter stages but could do nothing with it and Brora looked the more threatened but failed to score in regulation time.
They did take the lead though in the 92nd minute following a comedy of errors that culminated in a poor kick out by Hamilton to James Mackay and his shot cum pass found Sutherland who slotted home. This time there was to be no way back and man of the match Zander Sutherland secured his hat trick in the 104th minute to put the tie beyond doubt.
Brora – Malin, Houston, Williamson, Tokely [Porritt 114], Munro, Morrison, M.MacLean [Gillespie 83], Graham, Sutherland, S.Mackay and Greig [J Mackay 62]. Subs not used – Ross, C.MacLean and Allan.
Stenhousemuir – Hamilton, Duncan, Lithgow, McMillan, Summers, Hodge, Reid [R.Millar 84], Faulds [McMenamin 94], Grehan, Dickson [Sludden 84] and Watt. Subs not used – Greacen, Meechan, K.Millar and Shaw.
Referee – Mat Northcroft Assistants – Douglas Ross and Graham Elder.
|July 26, 2014||3:00 pm||Petrofac Training Cup||2014/2015||90'|
|Dudgeon Park, Brora|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|