Raith Rovers 2 - 2 DumbartonLeague - First Division
Saturday, October 6th, 2012, 3:00 PM at Starks Park
Referee: Mike Tumilty
Brian Graham (23)
Greig Spence (69)
Jim Lister (52)
Bryan Prunty (90)
|Grant Murray||Alan Adamson|
Mark Gilhaney for Mark Lamont (71)
Bryan Prunty for Martin McNiff (79)
Dougie Hill (45)
Grant Anderson (75)
Brian Graham (83)
Ross Forsyth (28)
Appearances & Goals To Date
|Jamie Ewings (GK)||12 apps||-|
|Alan Lithgow||51 apps||4 goals|
|Ross Forsyth||5 apps||-|
|Martin McNiff||89 apps||3 goals|
|Andy Graham||8 apps||-|
|Garry Fleming||11 apps||-|
|Chris Turner||2 apps||-|
|Phil Johnston||9 apps||-|
|Scott Agnew||51 apps||13 goals|
|Mark Lamont||21 apps||-|
|Jim Lister||11 apps||5 goals|
|Mark Gilhaney (sub)||80 apps||19 goals|
|Bryan Prunty (sub)||51 apps||20 goals|
|Youngest Player:||Mark Lamont (19 years 249 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Jim Lister (31 years 230 days)|
|Average Player Age:||25 years 255 days|
|Domestic Players:||10 (90.91 % of starting eleven)|
|Youngest Player:||Jamie Lyden (19 years 7 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Jim Lister (31 years 230 days)|
|Average Player Age:||25 years 319 days|
|Domestic Players:||15 (93.75 % of matchday squad)|
First Team Debuts
A FINE second half performance enabled Dumbarton to fight back from behind for a second time in a competitive game at Starks Park, earning them a well-deserved point with a 2-2 draw against Raith Rovers.
The first half ended up fairly even. The home side made more of their possession, and while Sons looked dangerous on the break they struggled to find a way through a well-organised Raith defence.
There was little between the teams during the opening quarter of an hour. Sons' frontman Jim Lister was soon in on the action. He took advantage of a poor kick out by Rovers 'keeper David McGurn.
The resulting cross was finely judged, but there was no one there to attack the ball and the Raith defence scrambled it clear.
Not long afterwards Rovers had an excellent opportunity to take the lead. Grant Anderson beat Ross Forsyth for pace and Greig Spence was inches away from converting the chance.
For Dumbarton, Chris Turner cut in from the right side of the field, but McGurn saved his left-foot strike comfortably.
The visitors came really close to opening the scoring on 20 minutes, when a fast, powerful drive from Scott Agnew, following a short free kick, was clattered on by Turner. It went agonisingly close to the far post, catching the Raith defence on the hop.
Then, just as it looked as if Sons were starting to gain a dominant position in the game, Raith Rovers went ahead.
On 23 minutes, Brian Graham burst through, took the ball past a defender and beat Jamie Ewings in the Dumbarton goal to make it 1-0.
There were first half chances at both ends after that. Sons won a succession of corners, pressurising the home defence from the flanks. But Raith continued to break back, and retained their lead through to half time.
Dumbarton came flying out of the blocks in the second half. Their play soon displayed a renewed sense of urgency.
Indeed, Sons nearly equalised on 48 minutes. Jim Lister picked up the ball some 35 yards out, running at the Raith back line and driving it into the right-hand side of the18-yard box, narrowly out of reach to oncoming players.
At the other end, a Raith Rovers free kick outside the area, flicked on by the menacing Brian Graham, almost doubled the home side's lead. Jamie Ewings made a good, diving save from that effort to keep the ball out — before making further important stops from two corners.
Sons responded determinedly. Fleming found Mark Lamont out on the left with a sweeping pass. The resulting drive was not sufficient to beat Raith 'keeper David McGurn, however.
Popular Sons forward Lister then whipped the ball across goal, but Garry Fleming could not quite make it into position to knock the chance home.
Then on 52 minutes Dumbarton's efforts were at last rewarded. Jim Lister at last got in behind Rovers' defence and slotted the ball home from close range to draw the match level at 1-1.
Winger Phil Johnston almost gave Sons' the lead as the visitors went on pressing forward, roared on by the jubilant away supporters. His effort flew just over the upright.
A strong challenge on Garry Fleming from Rovers' Simon Mensing produced appeals for a free kick on the edge of the area, but referee Mike Tumelty waved the game on.
Raith nearly reclaimed their lead when Dumbarton's Ross Forsyth stretched unsuccessfully for a header, and the ever-present Brian Graham drove the ball across the goalmouth, just away from Anderson.
On 69 minutes Rovers finally went back in front when an outswinging corner from Allan Walker was flicked on by Mensing and headed home by Greig Spence to make it 2-1.
Dumbarton gaffer Alan Adamson decided to consolidate his attacking options on 71 minutes, with Mark Gilhaney joining the fray to tease Raith from the wing, replacing Mark Lamont.
Eight minutes later another out-and-out forward, Bryan Prunty, came on for Martin McNiff. It showed clear intent and proved a crucial substitution.
As the visitors surged forward, a firm header from Jim Lister went just wide of the far corner and bar, following solid link play involving Fleming and Johnston.
Sons were well in charge of the ball at this point in the game, but actual chances eluded them as the clock turned remorselessly towards the 90-minute mark.
Then in the last seconds of regular time, Bryan Prunty brought the away support to their feet with an equaliser to make it 2-2. Andy Graham knocked down the ball for the big striker, and he duly side footed it past 'keeper McGurn.
Shortly afterwards Jamie Ewings made a point blank save with his outstretched leg to deny Raith Rovers one last chance to take the points.
When the whistle finally blew for a draw and a point for Dumbarton, it felt to players and fans alike as if it had been a victory.
Sons' second half performance was very strong indeed, and they had chances that could have given them a win in other circumstances.
The result still leaves Dumbarton rooted to the foot of the table. But an away point against the team in fourth place in the Irn Bru SFL First Division is certainly a boost.
Match report by Simon Barrow