Saturday, April 06, 2013

Season 2012/2013: Match 18: Montrose 2 Stirling Albion 2 (Irn-Bru Scottish Football League Division Three)

Today was sunny but chilly at the AnguS ArenA. At least it didnae snaw.

Mary Shelley's Paul Lunan was back from the spare parts shop today, but Garry Wood found himself sittting in the stand with Saved By The Bell's Jonathan Crawford. Bakery's Jamie Winter and Terry 'The Destroyer' Masson started in midfield, flanked by Lloyd Young and Ricky McIntosh. Wood's absence saw Boyle and Johnston form the smallest strike partnership outside Middle Earth. Leighton McIntosh, once linked with Celtic, is now deemed to be Montrose's fourth-best striker.

Stirling Albion included Kieran McAnespie and Graham Weir in their starting line-up, but looked distinctly average for much of the match.

But average Albion took the lead after seven minutes, Mark Perry with a low finish from a Jordan White knock-down.

Montrose had the better of the first half, but took until the 36th minute to equalise, Winter heading over the Stirling back line for Boyle to race through one-on-one with visiting keeper Filler. Boyle headed over the goalkeeper before taking a pair of knees to the ribs. Filler got a yellow card when it should have been a red, but Montrose were level.

Boyle was involved again when Montrose took the lead, robbing Jamie Bishop wide on the right before racing to the bye-line. Terry Masson dummied the square ball, allowing Ricky McIntosh time and space to float the ball over Filler.

They looked to have won the match until three minutes from time when Josh Flood met Scott Davidson's cross at the front post, heading across goal and in off the opposite upright.

Does it go without saying today's refereeing would have shamed a boys club match in the third world? Kevin Graham had a nightmare, allowing Filler to stay on the park when he should have walked, and allowing Albion to get away with a whole host of fouls. I only counted one Albion yellow card today, for Filler's assault on Boyle's ribs, but it could and should have been at least half a dozen.

The late equaliser is a kick in the balls for Montrose's promotion campaign. They were three minutes from bagging all three points, a result that would have seen them sitting third in the league, a point ahead of Peterhead and five ahead of Berwick. But now they're a point behind Peterhead and only three ahead of Berwick. Three of their four remaining matches are away from home and the home tie is against Queen's Park, sitting second in the league.

It looks like we're set for a nerve-wracking run in as Montrose push for a play-off place.

Man of the Match: Although he lost the ball to allow Albion to grab that late equaliser, Terry Masson otherwise had a good match, urging his team mates on and dummying the ball sweetly for the second Montrose goal.

No comments: