SPFL League One: DUNFERMLINE 3 STRANRAER 1: Date 31/08/13
Dunfermline completed their seven matches in August schedule with a home game against Stranraer. Both teams made one change from their midweek Scottish Communities League Cup elevens. Dunfermline brought in new signing Robert Thomson in place of Ryan Thomson while Stranraer started with Jamie Longworth instead of David McKenna.
The August sunshine disappeared as Stranraer in their lemon shirts kicked off attacking the goal at the McCathie Stand end. For the Pars Robert Thomson joined Jordan Moore as the dual strikeforce with Ryan Wallace sitting in behind them. It was Stranraer who won the first of two corners in fifth minute but Mark Corcoran eventually overstruck his delivery.
Dunfermline's first effort came a minute later when Stephen Husband got deep down the right and his cross to the far post was met by Thomson's header but that was straight at a defender. On 14 minute Falkingham sent Wallace down the left where he made ground and looked dangerous as he prodded the ball square for his strikers but the defence cut out the crucial pass.
Then Falkingham on the right side picked out Wallace on the top of the box but he could not control the ball and keeper David Mitchell collected. Next minute the keeper didn't look that clever when he dithered as he came out to gather an overstuck pass that centre half Frank McKeown left for his keeper. Wallace was alert to the chance but just failed to reach the ball before the all red keeper.
Then at the half way point in the first half drama entered the stage. Luke Johnston was deemed to have shoved over Martin Grehan on the left perimeter of the Pars box. Referee Des Roache pointed to the spot and although Ryan Scully chose correctly in going right to parry Chris Aitken's penalty, his defence failed to mop up the loose ball and when returned GREHAN was close in to divert the ball into the net. 0-1
Within a minute the Pars got the ball back level and it was the previous week's two goal hero Andy GEGGAN who was again on the scoresheet, converting a good delivery over from the right. 1-1.
Wallace had an opportunity very quickly thereafter but did not get enough on it to bother Mitchell. On 36 minutes there was a let off for the Pars after Corcoran whipped a ball high over to Grehan at the far post. The Stranraer no.9 should have netted but somehow managed to send the ball across the face of goal.
Wallace went on a counterattack, evading Grant Gallacher's late challenge but when he slipped the ball towards the strikers, Thomson was adjudged to be offside. Five minutes from the break, Falkingham cut back for Millen to cross but when Wallace placed a glancing header on target the keeper held.
Moore got one final chance to put the Pars ahead before the interval when he controlled a Husband pass to the right of the Stranraer goal but he was closed down and failed to get a shot in.
Half Time: Dunfermline 1 Stranraer 1
Just two minutes into the second half Whittle crossed deep for Thomson to head back across the Stranraer box but again Moore was closed down before he could release a shot. then on 50 minutes Wallace picked out Thomson on the right of the penalty box and the 20 year old striker returned it nicely for Wallace to strike from 25 yards but Mitchell parried and then ran on to smother the ball.
Minutes later a Millen cross hung too high as Geggan tried to get his head on it in front of goal for what would have been his second of the afternoon. Falkingham's run then won a corner on the right but Millen picked out the keeper. But in 56 minutes Moore set up Geggan on the edge of the area but the visitors defence blocked his shot out. Then the McCathie Stand was enraged after Thomson laid off the perfect ball for Wallace to run on to and finish but extremely disappointingly he didn't.
Whittle popped up on the right side of the Stranraer box to chip a cross into the six yard box but Moore and Thomson just couldn't stretch high enough to head home. Moore then sent away Wallace after Geggan had swept away a Stranraer corner. Wallace made good ground up the left and twisted his way into the box to shoot just inside the left goalpost but Mitchell dropped down to save.
Whittle continued to get up the park and in 66 minutes hit a shot at goal that escaped to the right. Geggan set up Millen but his shot was blocked. At the other end there was a horrendous miss from right in front of goal. Corcoran made the opportunity on the left and when he cut back sub David McKenna remarkably sliced his shot wide right.
Stranraer were buoyed by the chance and suddenly believed they could get a winner. Corcoran floated the ball across the face of goal and then Aitken had his effort from 20 yards blocked by Johnston. When play switched to the other end again the Pars earned a 82nd minute free kick on the left just a yard out from the byeline. The delivery was challenged by Morris ans Smith before JOHNSTON was able to stab the ball home from six yards. 2-1 up.
The lead was extended four minutes later as the Pars put on yet another late show. Allan SMITH was well positioned on the right to take advantage of Falkingham's switch. The 19 year old striker controlled the pass and thrashed home from a similar position as the previous Saturday, his angled shot nestling in the far left of the visitors' net. 3-1.
Going into the international break Dunfermline therefore have nine points from four league matches and trail the leaders, Rangers by three points.
DUNFERMLINE: Ryan Scully; Ross Millen, Luke Johnston, Callum Morris, Alex Whittle; Stephen Husband, Andy Geggan, Josh Falkingham (c), Ryan Wallace, Robert Thomson (Allan Smith 72), Jordan Moore (Ryan Thomson79).
SUBS NOT USED: Chris Kane, Shaun Byrne, Ryan Ferguson, Fayssal El Bakhtaoui, Ryan Goodfellow (GK)
YELLOW CARD: Johnston (21)
SCORERS: Geggan (23), Johnston (82), Smith (86)
STRANRAER: David Mitchell, Frank McKeown, Scott Rumsby, Scott Robertson, Lloyd Kinnaird, Mark Corcoran, Chris Aitken, Grant Gallagher, Sean Winter (Ryan Borris 28), Jamie Longworth (David McKenna 59), Martin Grehan.
SUBS NOT USED: Chris Fahey (GK), David McGregor, Mark Docherty, Adam Forde, Andrew Stirling
SCORER: Grehan (22)
YELLOW CARD: Borris (70), Grehan (84)
REFEREE: Des Roache
WEATHER: Fine 16C
50/50 winning ticket: No.70902 won £560.
NEXT MATCH: (away) SPFL League One v Brechin City
Saturday 14th September 2013, kick off 3.00pm
- www: MATCH PICTURES
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