Stenhousemuir v Forfar Athletic at Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir on 20.10.18
SPFL Ladbrokes League One Att 442
Stenhousemuir 1 [Neill 55] Forfar Athletic 2 [Easton 22, Baird 26]
Stenhousemuir – Smith, Donaldson, Neill, Tena [b89], Ferry [Gibbons 79], McGuigan, Duthie, Cook [Vaughan 87], Ross [O’Hara 71], Dickson and McMenamin. Subs not used – McMinn, Reid, Halleran and McBrearty.
Forfar Athletic – McCallum [b54], Bain, Meechan, Whyte, Travis [b62], Reilly, Hilson, Hill, Baird, Easton [Moore 72] and Cunningham [Mackintosh 65]. Subs not used – Muir, Wilson, Malone and Coupe.
Referee – Lloyd Wilson Assistants – Graham Chambers and Jim Burns.
Stenhousemuir were hoping to make it two wins in a row but the momentum that they had gained from the stoppage time winner against Montrose has dissipated after the international break and they were unsuccessful in their mission.
The Warriors made one change to the starting eleven with Seb Ross replacing Harry Paton who was suffering from concussion after an injury at training. The game started fairly level though clear cut chances were few and far between. The danger signs though were there when Mark Hill glided past a number of players in the seventh minute before he was finally stopped. Ten minutes later a run by Dylan Easton was ended just on the edge of the box through a Morgyn Neill trip but Ross Cunningham failed to get the free-kick on target.
This was the start of a poor spell for the home side for which they were duly punished. There was a let off in the 19th minute when Dale Hilson struck the crossbar from a Jamie Bain cross. The goal was only delayed though as the Loons eventually took the lead in the 22nd minute when Easton showed good feet to create an opening and tucked the ball into the corner of the net. Stenhousemuir hadn’t recovered from that setback when they conceded the second when John Baird took advantage of the ball being played over the home defence and dispatched the ball home.
Gradually though Stenhousemuir got going again and there were chances for them before the end of the half but both Colin McMenamin and Conner Duthie failed to reduce the deficit with the latter having the best chance but by switching to his weaker foot it allowed a defender valuable time to block his shot.
There was a let-off just after the resumption when the ball bounced over the Stenhousemuir defence and Hilson was unlucky to see his shot strike the woodwork again with Graeme Smith stranded.
In the 53rd minute Duthie and Ross combined and the former should have tested the keeper but his powerful shot went over the bar. Two minutes later though Marc McCallum who had been cautioned for time wasting was beaten when Morgyn Neill headed a Duthie free over.
This gave Stenhousemuir heart but they were vulnerable to the swift counter attacking Forfar side and Graeme Smith was to prove his worth before the end of the game. He made a fine save to deny Mark Hill in the 64th minute and an ever better one to prevent Lewis Moore getting on the score-sheet in the 83rd minute.
Stenhousemuir for all their pressing were struggling to breach the Forfar defence with a McMenamin header into the ground that was comfortably saved by McCallum all they had to show for their efforts.
In fact it was Forfar that came closest to scoring again when Murray Macintosh struck the post in stoppage time. Nevertheless it will be Jim Weir who will have left Ochilview the happier manager whilst Brown Ferguson was scratching his head looking for answers about how and why Stenhousemuir fell to pieces during that 15 minute spell in the first half.
|October 20, 2018
|SPFL Ladbrokes League 1