U20s v Partick ThistleMonday, 30th Jan 2017
SPFL Development League: (away) v Partick Thistle, Stuart Morrison (45+3) 0-1. Michael Paton (46) 0-2. Cammy Smith (77) 0-3. Harry Granger (78) 1-3
- - Potts says performance was alright
PARTICK THISTLE 1 DUNFERMLINE ATHLETIC 3
The away Development League match against Partick Thistle was played at Airdrie`s Excelsior Stadium. Yet again John Potter was able to field a strong eleven with first team squad players Lewis Martin, Lewis Spence, Gavin Reilly, Michael Paton and David Hopkirk all starting.
The Pars kicked off and both sides had early chances with the visitors forcing a first minute corner that Paton sent over but Conner Duthie`s header cleared the bar. Then in four minutes Reilly had a shot palmed away by keeper Conor Cullen who then saved Reece Duncan`s follow up.
Thistle created their first real opportunity in the next minute when Callum Wilson set up Neil McLaughlin for a shot but Cammy Gill pulled off a fine save to dent the Jags. An eighth minute corner was won by Hopkirk but when Paton delivered Duthie was again unsuccessful with his header.
The Thistle keeper then made a good stop with his legs after a Hopkirk cut back was blocked only to allow Scott Lochhead a shot. Both keepers made saves in 14th minute, Cullen palming away a Reilly effort and Gill getting his fingers to push wide a Dominic Docherty attempt.
Duthie and then Lochhead launched efforts that were off target before Gill was called upon to be out fast in 20th minute to gather McLaughlin`s cross towards Kevin Nisbet. Nisbet did grab the opportunity to shoot six minutes later when set up by Andrew McCarthy but dispatched his shot off target. Paton was similarly wide with a 31st minute free kick but with another chance just minutes later he made Cullen save.
The Jags were forced into making two substitutions before the interval. The first substitution of the match was in 36th minute when Ian Stokes went off with an ankle knock with his twin brother James replacing him. Two minutes from the break Jamie Hall had to replace Matty McInally.
Hopkirk tried to break the deadlock but he too sent the ball into the stand. Reilly had a further chance, receiving a great ball from Paton but the keeper came out on top but deep into added time at the end of the half Hopkirk forced a free kick 22 yards out. Stuart MORRISON met Duthie`s free kick to head in the opener.
It had been an opening half of misplaced passes and players slipping on the surface.
Half time: Partick Thistle 0 Dunfermline Athletic 1
The Fifers introduced Cammy Smith for Scott Lochhead for the restart and then increased their lead within the first minute. PATON and Duncan exchanged passes before the winger crashed the ball high into the Thistle net from close range. 0-2
The Pars defence easily dealt with a low ball from Nisbet and a Mark Lamont cross before more pressure was heaped on the Jags. A couple of corners posed a threat but Reilly`s header went straight to the keeper and then Cullen punched away Hopkirk`s 54th minute corner.
Thistle managed a shot of their own in 56 minutes when Hall supplied Nisbet the opportunity but he curled his effort wide. The half passed its midway point with Reilly heading wide and Paton running out of ground after going on a good run. Gill was kept in the match as McLaughlin made him save and was blessed with good fortune as James Stokes sent the rebound wide.
Spence and Martin were required to deal with a couple of Thistle attacks before at the other end a fine ball in from Duncan was just too strong for Reilly. Sub Smith sent an effort wide in 76 minutes but scored in the next. He created the chance for himself, cutting in from the left before firing low from the edge of the box into the corner of the net. 0-3
Two minutes later a very special effort from 40 yards out beat Gill to make it 3-1. The goalscorer was Harry GRANGER who made the ball fly into the Pars net.
Four minutes from time Duthie tried a long range effort but well wide, could not match the success of his opponent. There was time for the hosts to try one final effort at an 89th minute corner. McLaughlin and Nisbet combined but it was Hall who got in the attempt but his shot went wide.
In the end it was another good win for the Pars Development side and their margin of success could have been more! The win takes the Pars above the Jags in the league and up into sixth place.
SUBS NOT USED: Struan Herd,
SCORERS: Granger (78)
DUNFERMLINE: Cammy Gill: Reece Duncan, Stuart Morrison, Lewis Martin, Conner Duthie: Johnny Galloway: Michael Paton, Lewis Spence, Gavin Reilly, David Hopkirk, Scott Lochhead (Cammy Smith HT)
SUBS NOT USED: Robbie Crawford, Brandon Luke, Ciaran Lafferty, Josh Dunn (GK)
SCORERS: Morrison (45+3), Paton (46), Smith (77) 0-3
REFEREE: Graham Grainger
WEATHER: Sunny 5C
NEXT MATCH: SPFL Development League (away) v Hearts, Ochilview Park, Stenhousemuir, Monday 6th February, kick off 7.30pm
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