Saunderson’s sensational strike sees sub help sink Gala

Posted on Saturday, April 2nd, 2016

Spartans came from a goal down to defeat Gala Fairydean Rovers at Ainslie Park in a game that came to life in the second half after an opening stanza stalemate.

After a brace of cancellations over the last seven days, Dougie Samuel’s side were back in action with Michael Bruce and Scott Maxwell returning to the squad after returning from injury.

It was a first half for the purists at Ainslie Park as neither side found the net in a frustrating forty five minutes.

Dean McColm having the best of the Border side’s chances in the 20th minute from a corner but his shot could only ruffle the outside of Blair Carswell’s net.

Rovers defender Taylor Hope certainly offered his team a ray of the same when he put his body on the line to deny Keith Murray deep inside the box.

The half-time team talks could have taken a different tact but for Wilson pushing Murray’s 20 yard effort onto the post, with two minutes left on the clock.

Half Time: Spartans 0-0 Gala Fairydean Rovers

Goals may have been in short supply in the first half however that was to change in what turned out to be a chalk and cheese forty five.

It was the visitors who took the lead in the 54th minute when their captain McColm looked on as his shot just breached the whitewash despite the best efforts of Carswell to scoop the ball back over the line.

The goal riled the home side and within 120 seconds, it was all square once again.  Jack Beesley’s cross from out wide was turned home by Keith Murray, netting his 14th goal of season.

Jack Beesley almost put his side ahead for the first time in the game when he collected a well weighted Greenhill pass in the box but he could only direct it over the bar.  It was the playmaker’s last involvement in the game with Ewan Saunderson replacing him midway through the second half.

It was to be the substitute who brought the home crowd to their feet with a sensational 25 yard strike that was only ever going to nestle in the net after it left the youngster’s right foot.   It was a goal that was worthy of winning any game, never mind edging his side in front.

With the clock ticking down, Jamie Dishington, who played in the Under 20s victory last night, came on for Ross Gray.

Then, with eight minutes left, the three points were secured courtesy of a diving header from David Greenhill who complimented Murray’s finely chipped cross.

Murray made way for George Hunter and the youngster was unlikely not to make it a goalscoring appearance off the bench when he went one-on-one with the Rovers keeper but his lob couldn’t find the target.

Full Time:  Spartans 3-1 Gala Fairydean Rovers

Malt and Hops Man of the Match: Mikey Herd

Spartans: Carswell, Thomson, Brown, Herd, Bruce, Greenhill, Beesley (Saunderson 68), Stevenson, Murray (Hunter 83), Horribine, Gray (Dishington 80).  Subs Not Used: Maxwell, Morton (GK)

Gala: Wilson, Stephen (Lamb 73), Miller (Clapperton 73), Hope, Allan, Herdman, Scott, Bonnar, Noble, McColm (Steele 66), R. Aitchison.  Subs Not Used: T. Aitchison

Next Fixture

Date: Friday 17th May
Opponent: Dumbarton
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: Play-Off Final 2nd Leg
Kick off: 7.30pm

cinch J-Teq EMS Solutions Ltd Spentwell JB Contracts (Scotland) Ltd
Mintbox Removals Johnstone Carmichael Consider IT Shepherd Chartered Surveyors
Sonsie Face Westwoods Health Club Mr Eion Coffee Hart Lifts
Soho IT CHAS Jim Martin