Super stopper Swain’s shut-out sees Spartans thrive at Threave

Posted on Saturday, August 16th, 2014

Spartans made it back-to-back wins on the road as they put four past Threave Rovers without reply at Meadow Park.

The Scottish Sun Lowland League title holders’ ten hour round trip was rewarded with maximum points after a convincing display that sees Dougie Samuel’s side go joint top with Edinburgh City and next weekend’s opponents, East Kilbride.

Spartans were attacking the goal at the clubhouse end and with a swirling wind and drizzle overhead, conditions were likely to be a factor in determining the outcome of the game.

The visitors took a 14th minute lead after Kevin Motion’s quick thinking saw him take a free-kick as the Threave defence retreated and his pass put Errol Douglas in space.  The big striker raced in on Parker’s goal and he lifted the ball over the advancing keeper to put his side ahead.

Motion’s dead ball trickery almost led to another goal moments later.  An in-swinging corner was followed by a game of header keepie-uppie in the box before Michael Bruce hit his shot narrowly over the bar.

The home side were unlucky in the 40th minute when they almost scored with their first clear cut chance of the game.  A long-range effort from Greig Goodwin looked to have taken a deflection en-route to goal and Kevin Swain had to look sharp to get down low to push the ball to safety.

Rovers were left to rue their missed opportunity and with two minutes left in the half, Spartans doubled their lead.

The ball broke to Ally MacKinnon inside the 18 yard box and from a tight angle, he lofted the ball goal bound to find the Threave keeper caught off guard.  Despite Parker’s despairing efforts to retreat and claw the ball out from behind the line, there was no doubt of the outcome.

Half Time: Threave Rovers 0-2 Spartans

Threave almost got themselves back into the game from the restart after Dean Fyfe latched onto a loose John Grant pass and the Midfielder had Swain scrambling across his goal to usher the ball to safety.

Kevin Sivewright made his way into the Referee’s notebook for what seemed an innocuous challenge just outside his own area.  Swain could only spill the resultant free-kick however the shot-stopper ensured he left with a clean sheet by showing tremendous agility to get back to his feet and somehow prevent Jamie Struthers from scoring.

Spartans made a 62nd minute substitution with Jack Beesley replaced by Sean Muhsin then ten minutes later, Donal Henretty was introduced for scorer Errol Douglas.

The third goal for the Ainslie Park men saw Willie Bremner execute a first class cross for substitute Sean Muhsin to glide the ball into the empty net.   Muhsin’s goal celebration that followed brought a smile to even the beleaguered home support, with only the strains of the Benny Hill theme tune missing from the Rovers PA.

With ten minutes left on the clock, Man of the Match Craig Stevenson made it four when he raced in on goal to slot the ball past Parker to secure a valuable three points on the road for the Ainslie Park side.

Final Score: Threave Rovers 0-4 Spartans

Spartans: Swain, MacKinnon (Brown), Sivewright, Stevenson, Bruce, Beesley (Muhsin), Grant, Herd, Motion, Bremner, Douglas (Henretty). Subs (Not Used): Cennerazzo, Beacher, & Gilpin

Malt and Hops Man of the Match: Craig Stevenson

A final mention to our hosts for their fantastic and generous hospitality.

Next Fixture

Date: Saturday 13th April
Opponent: Stranraer FC
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: SPFL 2
Kick off: 3.00pm

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