SPFL: Cat returns, Cammy cracker and late drama against Blue Toon

Posted on Sunday, November 19th, 2023

Blair Carswell made a return between the sticks for his 270th game as Spartans welcomed league leaders Peterhead to Ainslie Park in the latest round of SPFL 2 matches.

There was a starting XI debut for Paul Watson whilst Bradley Whyte was on the bench.

The opening exchanges were limited in terms of clean cut chances for either side however a couple of early touches for Carswell certainly helping ease ‘The Cat’ back into the swing of things.

A tasty defence splitting pass from Rhys Armstrong found Cammy Russell who forced Stuart McKenzie into a fine save as he got down low to push behind.

Peterhead were looking to using the counter attack to surprise the hosts and it took a timely tackle from Kevin Waugh to halt the visitors in their attempts to break the deadlock.

The Blue Toon were then awarded a free-kick twenty five yards out which cleared the wall however it found the face of the crossbar before Mikey Allan was fouled in the process of clearing the danger.

At the other end, Jamie Dishington was clattered turning Jack Brown to give Spartans a free-kick of their own.  Rhys Armstrong whipped it in but Mikey Allan could only head over.

Then, just before the half hour mark, Peterhead took the lead.  McKee sent a free-kick into the box and he found Scott Ross who headed downwards for it to bounce beyond Carswell into the net.

Spartans looked to get back on level terms and Cammy Russell went on a run through the middle of the park and appeared to the clipped whilst darting in between two Peterhead players.  There was more than a degree of surprise amongst the home contingent, none more so than Russell, when he was shown a yellow card for alleged simulation.

HT: The Spartans 0-1 Peterhead

Things certainly heated up on a chilly afternoon after the break with some meaty challenges being put in as Spartans looked to get back on level terms.

Play was held up as Caleb Goldie received treatment after landing heavily under a challenge by Dishington.

Cammy Russell was then subject to McKee’s boot catching him in the mid-rift.  A free-kick was awarded however there was no booking which was perhaps fortunate for the Peterhead man who moments later did enter the Referee’s jotter following a tug at Rhys Armstrong.

Then, the equaliser.  Spartans were awarded a free-kick out tight against the touchline.  Cammy Russell sent the ball into the box and incredibly it flew directly into the top corner surprising all and sundry in the process.

Gavin Morrison was to replace Watson who had put in a sterling shift for three quarters of this tight tussle.  Minutes later a further change saw Sam Newman replace Mikey Allan.

With five minutes left on the clock, the pendulum swung back in favour of the visitors. Hamish Ritchie and Reid exchanging passes and it was the former who was to send a low drilled effort beyond Carswell to give Peterhead the lead for the second time.

Deep into injury time and as the ball was swung into the Peterhead box, it found Sam Newman who could only look on in agony as his header cleared the crossbar.

FT: The Spartans 1-2 Peterhead

Malt and Hops Man of the Match: Mikey Allan

Next Fixture

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

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