Queens Park v Stenhousemuir at Hampden Park, Glasgow on 5.5.18
SPFL Ladbrokes League One Play-off Semi Final Second Leg Att 948
Queens Park 1 [McLauchlan 41] Stenhousemuir 2 [McGuigan 17, 80]
Queens Park – White, Millen [Docherty 75], Burns, Fotheringham, McLauchlan, Gibson, Leitch, McVey [b38] [Mortimer 78], Keena, Donnelly and Gullan [Galt 62]. Subs not used – Orr, Nimmo and MacPherson.
Stenhousemuir – Smith, Meechan, M.Dunlop, R.Dunlop, Donaldson, Ferry, McGuigan [Dallas 90], Paton [b62], Cook [b84], Scott [Longworh 90] and Ferns [Murray 62]. Subs not used – Marsh, Halleran, McMinn and Paterson.
Referee – Euan Anderson Assistants – Ralph Gordon and Ivan Stankovic
Both sides went into this semi-final decider knowing that they had everything to play for after drawing the first leg at Ochilview. Queens Park had to do so without Adam Cummins after his dismissal on the Tuesday night but his replacement the experienced Gerry McLauchlan gave a fine performance that earned him a goal and also the Queens Park player of the match award. They found the absence of Anton Brady who pulled up in the warm up harder to replace.
For the Warriors they were missing Colin McMenamin who had been leading the line well in recent weeks after he suffered a broken arm in the first leg that required surgery and a steel plate inserted, With the wider expanses of Hampden Brown Ferguson went for wide players to try and stretch the home defence.
The Spiders should have been favourites going into this game being the highest ranked team but Hampden hasn’t seen them make the most of home advantage this season as they had secured only two victories there this season. Nevertheless the game was set up for an intriguing affair before a large crowd for the occasion though in the surrounds of Hampden it would have still felt a lonely place.
Stenhousemuir started well with a Cook cross that was headed just wide by Jimmy Scott. It was the home side though that came closest to opening the scoring when in the 9th minute of the game a 25 yard shot by Aiden Keena rattled the crossbar with Chris Smith beaten. A minute later a Queens corner fell to Luke Donnelly and his strike took a slight deflection and hit the base of the post before going out.
The Warriors would have been worried about these early threats but their nerves were settled in the 17th minute when a Mark McGuigan header looped into the net from a cross from the left flank.
There was little in the way of goalmouth action after this until the 41st minute when a Ross Millen free-kick was met by McLauchlan who headed home at the near post in what was from a Stenhousemuir point of view a preventable goal.
Keena fired over in the 55th minute after tidy footwork but chances for both teams in the early stages of the second half were at a premium for both sides. The Spiders suffered a blow when Millen went off injured after being knocked out when a McLauchlan clearance hit him in the face as Millen fell to the ground in a tackle. After lengthy treatment he was subbed being stretchered off.
In the 80th minute of the game Mark McGuigan scored his second goal of the game to put the tie beyond doubt after a clever run by Harry Paton opened up the defence before he slipped the ball to McGuigan and the striker placed the ball past the keeper and into the net.
That proved to be the winner and the Warriors progressed to the final. There was a nice touch by Queens who put a sign up on the electronic screens congratulating Stenhousemuir and wishing them good luck in the final. This was a nice gesture and appreciated by everyone.
|May 5, 2018||7:45 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 1 Playoffs||2017/18||90'|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|