Stenhousemuir v Forfar Athletic at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on 26.10.13
SPFL League One Attendance 408
Stenhousemuir 1 [Gemmell 10] Forfar Athletic 1 [Hilson 36]
Games against Forfar are usually tense affairs and this one proved to be no exception. The Loons have struggled on the road this season but looked desperate to rectify this as they came out quickly in this game. In the first three minutes only a timely tackle on Chris Templeman denied Forfar and this was followed up by a Gavin Swankie effort that flew just wide of the post. The Warriors had been pushed back in the opening encounters but they broke forward in the 5th minute and Darren Smith was thwarted by a block from veteran Darren Dods. In the 10th minute though, Stenhousemuir took the lead with a sublime goal. The move started with Bryan Hodge picking the ball up in his own six yard box before picking out Sean Higgins in the centre circle who then played the ball down the ledt channel for Darren Smith on the left and his cross was met by John Gemmell who volleyed past Darren Hill from 16 yards. Forfar responded with attempts by Gavin Malin that was saved by Chris Smith and a Dale Hilson free kick that drifted just wide. The Warriors continued to look dangerous in attack though and could and should have doubled their lead in the 18th minute and once again it was the Smith and Gemmell combination that opened up the Forfar defence. Smith picked up the ball just over the halfway line and played it out to John Gemmell, before collecting the return pass in the box where he rounded the keeper before clipping the post with his shot. Smith then had another chance after beating the offside trap but with only the keeper to beat albeit from distance shot just wide of the target. He then saw another effort saved by Hill.
Stenhousemuir were to regret their profligacy in front of goal when Forfar equalised in the 36th minute. Malin picked out the unmarked Dale Hilson after Eddie Malone was caught between closing Malin down or sticking with Hilson. This gave Hilson the time to pick his spot and he shot into the net with the help of the inside of the post. They could have taken the lead shortly after this when Mark Baxter’s cross was headed down by Templeman to Hilson 12 yards out and although he hit a powerful strike Chris Smith was in the right place to make the save look easy.
The second half was a mirror image of the first with Stenhousemuir taking the early initiative before Forfar took over the bulk of the half. By that stage the Warriors though should have been leading as in the 49th minute Smith and Gemmell combined once again before the former had an effort saved by Hill who managed to divert the ball on to the post before it was cleared. This was followed a minute later by another chance when Hill pushed out a Ross Smith header from a Higgins corner and then had to scramble to tip the rebound header from Kevin McKinlay header over the bar. Forfar’s Gavin Swankie opened up the Stenhousemuir defence in the 55th minute to pick out Gary Fusco and although he beat Chris Smith Eddie Malone was able to clear off the line. This was then followed by a Templeman strike just wide a minute later. There was a real let off in the 63rd minute when Gavin Swankie drifted away from his marker Darren Smith and side footed past the post when it looked easier to score. John Gemmell then thundered another volley off the crossbar that then went over the enclosure roof but it would not have counted anyway as he was flagged for a marginal offside. The best chance for either side in the later stages came in the 86th minute when Nicky Devlin burst into the box and although his cross was just behind Errol Douglas it found John Gemmell who shot goal wards only to see it blocked by a sliding block by Dods. This was to be the final chance of the game and the game ended in a draw though if Stenhousemuir had converted some of their chances in the first half it could have been a different story. To be fair to Forfar though, they were the stronger in the second period.
Stenhousemuir –C.Smiith, Devlin, McKinlay, R.Smith, Malone, Hodge, Dickson [Brash 70], Rowson [Douglas 78], Gemmell, Higgins and D.Smith. Subs not used – Lynch, McMillan, Ferguson, McNeil and Shaw.
Forfar Athletic – Hill, Baxter, I.Campbell, Dods [b87], Andrews, Fusco, McCluskey [t][McManus 90], Malin [b8][Dale 69], Templeman, Swankie and Hilson. Subs not used – R.Campbell, Keller, Kader, Fotheringham and Douglas.
Referee – David Somers Assistants – Graeme Leslie and Gavin Thomson
|October 26, 2013||3:00 pm||SPFL Ladbrokes League 1||2013/2014||90'|
|Ochilview Park Stenhousemuir|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals||Outcome|