East Stirlingshire v Stenhousemuir at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on 25.7.15
Petrofac Cup First Round Att 304
East Stirlingshire 2 [Donaldson 30, McKenna 77] Stenhousemuir 3 [Stirling 35,45, McMenamin 58]
East Stirlingshire –Barnard, Kinnaird, Shepherd, Greene, Townsley [Tully 39], Donaldson, Wallace, McCabe, Carruthers [Wright 63], McKenna and Faulds. Subs not used –Vidler, Kay and Dolan
Stenhousemuir – Barclay, Meechan, Henderson [b53], Malcolm, Murray, Millar, Gilhaney, Stirling, McMenamin, Smith [McShane 86] and Cook [b50]. Subs not used – McCormack, Summers, Nash, Hamilton, Eddington and Shaw.
Referee – Stephen Finnie Assistants – Graham McNellie and Chris McNab
The first competitive match of the 2015-16 saw Stenhousemuir and their tenants East Stirlingshire drawn together in the first round of the Petrofac Cup. The ‘Shire haven been drawn out first were nominally the home team which meant that the Warriors support were seated in the away end of the stand. At least the Warriors were in the best position to see the bulk of their goals.
With eight Stenhousemuir players making their competitive debut starting for the club and another one coming off the bench it was no surprise that at times it wasn’t the sharpest of performances. Euan Murray failed to get full contact on an Alan Cook corner in the fourth minute but three minutes the keepers were tested for the first time when Jamie Barclay beat out a Michael Wallace effort. It was fairly even in the early stages but gradually Stenhousemuir began to get on top and only a superb one handed save by Richard Bernard in the 17th minute from Stephen Stirling kept the score level. On the half hour the Shire took the lead when a Kyle Carruthers cross was allowed to bounce in the danger area and Reece Donaldson seized the opportunity to hit an overhead kick into the net. The Warriors almost equalised a minute later when a Ross Meechan strike was cleared off the line after a Cook freekick caused havoc. They did draw level though in the 35th minute when a Stirling strike from the edge of the box hit Cook and fell back into Stirling’s path and he dispatched the ball into the net. Shortly after that the Shire suffered another blow when Chris Townsley limped off after picking up an injury. To make things worse for the ‘home’ side the Warriors scored their second in time added on. Once again Stirling was the scorer bundling the ball into the net after a Mark Gilhaney strike was superbly stopped by Barnard.
The second half started with controversy when Alan Cook was only cautioned after he reacted angrily clashing with Donaldson and pushing him to the ground. There could have been no complaints if he had been sent off and there were mixed emotions from both sets of supporters to the decisions. The ‘Shire had a good chance to level the tie in the 50th minute when the ball fell to ex-Warrior Kris Faulds on the edge of the six yard box but he fired over the bar. The play was quite open in these stages and Alan Smith just failed to nudge the ball past Barnard at the other end a minute later. With the ‘Shire pushing for the equaliser they were caught by a swift counter attack by Stenhousemuir that ended with Colin McMenamin scoring the third goal for the ‘visitors’. Just after the restart a Wallace shot skidded off the wet pitch and Barclay had to adjust to tip the ball round the post. Liam Henderson came close with a strike following an overlapping run that Barnard saved with his legs. Connor Greene missed a sitter at the other end when he got a header all wrong only yards out, though he looked offside but wasn’t flagged.
The impetus though was starting to go with the ‘Shire and Barclay once again denied his old team when he made a one handed save from Neil McCabe in the 77th minute. Within seconds though David McKenna did reduce the deficit when Stenhousemuir switched off at a throw in and Greene’s effort was parried out to McKenna to fire into the net.
The ‘Shire threw players forward but looked vulnerable to counter attacks though play was mainly in the Stenhousemuir half of the field. The Warriors did come close with a Smith header that drifted just wide but the best chance fell to Wallace who volleyed a Faulds cross just over the bar.
In the end though Stenhousemuir were victorious and go into the second round draw. They did play some nice football going forwards but at times showed that they are not the finished article and at this stage of the season they would hardly expect to be. Nevertheless there are a number of positives for both teams to take out of the game.
|July 25, 2015||3:00 pm||Petrofac Training Cup||2015/2016||90'|
|Ochilview Park Stenhousemuir|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|