Raith Rovers 3 - 2 DumbartonLeague - First Division
Saturday, February 16th, 2013, 3:00 PM at Starks Park
Referee: Craig Charleston
Allan Walker (39)
Pat Clarke (52)
Brian Graham (90)
Bryan Prunty (45)
Bryan Prunty (58)
|Grant Murray||Ian Murray|
David Smith for Grant Anderson (54)
Greig Spence for Joe Hamill (67)
Owen Ronald for Garry Fleming (77)
Marc McCusker for Nicky Phinn (89)
Stuart Anderson (82)
Laurie Ellis (84)
Bryan Prunty (39)
Scott Smith (46)
Paul McGinn (60)
Appearances & Goals To Date
|Stephen Grindlay (GK)||270 apps||-|
|Paul McGinn||3 apps||-|
|Scott Smith||6 apps||-|
|Stuart Urquhart||1 app (debut)||-|
|Alan Lithgow||65 apps||6 goals|
|Garry Fleming||24 apps||1 goal|
|Nicky Phinn||1 app (debut)||-|
|Mark Lamont||31 apps||-|
|Scott Agnew||67 apps||17 goals|
|Bryan Prunty||67 apps||29 goals|
|Jim Lister||27 apps||10 goals|
|Marc McCusker (sub)||7 apps||1 goal|
|Owen Ronald (sub)||1 app (debut)||-|
|Youngest Player:||Stuart Urquhart (17 years 332 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Jim Lister (31 years 363 days)|
|Average Player Age:||25 years 6 days|
|Domestic Players:||11 (100.00 % of starting eleven)|
|Youngest Player:||Josh Lumsden (16 years 192 days)|
|Oldest Player:||Jim Lister (31 years 363 days)|
|Average Player Age:||24 years 48 days|
|Domestic Players:||16 (100.00 % of matchday squad)|
First Team Debuts
|Nicky Phinn||(Signed February 15th, 2013)|
|Stuart Urquhart||(Signed )|
|Owen Ronald||(Signed )|
IT was a case of 'so near, but so far' for Dumbarton away in Kirkcaldy, as Raith Rovers stole the game 3-2 in time added on to claim all three points.
A Sons team featuring five changes as a result of injuries, suspensions and squad additions came from behind twice to level the game. But in the end it was not quite enough to secure what would have been a creditable draw.
Despite the reverse, gaffer Ian Murray encouraged the team and supporters not to be downcast, praising the effort and determination on display.
"We gave everything in the game," he declared afterwards – promising that his stretched but positive squad will dig deep for the three upcoming home fixtures.
The game got underway on a difficult playing surface bearing several patches of sand at Starks Park.
As both sides initially struggled to come to terms with the pitch, the first real chance of the match fell to Dumbarton.
A free kick from Alan Lithgow was headed down by Jim Lister for Mark Lamont. But his strike went wide of the far post.
Sons began to get more of the possession and push up the field. Lister knocked the ball down for Bryan Prunty, whose first shot is saved. It fell to new signing Nick Phinn, but the Raith 'keeper regained balance to make an impressive second stop.
At the other end of the park, Dumbarton goalie Stephen Grindlay made an important one-handed stop at full stretch from Brian Graham, as the home side broke through.
Minutes later it was fine goal keeping and stout defending from Sons that kept the scores level in a goalmouth scramble. Scott Smith was among those making important stops and tackles.
Dumbarton forward Jim Lister had an accidental clash of heads with Raith Rovers' centre-half, but both were able to carry on after receiving treatment.
Not long afterwards there was another good chance for Sons. Positive link-up play between Lister and Prunty results in a shot for the big front man, but it flashed over the bar.
Raith began to push back. Prunty was booked for a last-ditch foul on a fast break from the middle of the park.
Then the home side went 1-0 up six minutes before the break. It was a simple goal. A cross was neatly flicked on and tapped in at the back post by Allan Walker.
It looked as if that was how the half would end. Sons were not to be denied, however. Just before the whistle, Jim Lister laid the ball off for Bryan Prunty. He fired across the goal and the ball went in off the post.
It was no less than Dumbarton deserved. Indeed, on the run of play, they would have been disappointed not to get to half time in front.
The second half proved a different challenge. Early on there was a penalty shout for the visitors when Phinn appeared to have been held back when he tried to get his head a promising Garry Fleming cross.
On 52 minutes Raith knocked the wind out of Dumbarton's sails by taking the lead once more. The ball broke to Pat Clarke outside the area. His well-timed curving finish left Grindlay with no chance to make it 2-1.
Two minutes later Sons gaffer Ian Murray made his first change, bringing on Stephen McDougall for Mark Lamont.
Dumbarton were level again on 58 minutes. A Paul McGinn ball was hurled into the area, Lithgow knocked it down and goal hero Bryan Prunty turned and volleyed home from a few yards out, to the delight of the travelling support.
Rovers pressed back ferociously, and for several minutes looked as if they might overwhelm the visitors, who held on to the 2-2 score line determinedly.
There were goalmouth scrambles that could have resulted in goals at both ends of the pitch. Dumbarton, in particular, came desperately close to getting in front for the first time.
A Scott Agnew shot was blocked by Simon Mensing. There was another penalty appeal for handball, but referee Craig Charleston waved it away, and somehow Sons failed to score from the resulting corner.
Grindlay made another important save for Dumbarton and Alan Lithgow made a series of vital clearances as the game moved from end-to-end.
It looked as if the game would end in a draw and another valuable point for Sons. But disaster struck in time added on as Brian Graham slammed home a lose ball to steal all three points for the home side.
Despite the disappointment, it was another courageous display from Sons, with debutants Stuart Urquhart and Nick Phinn both putting in good shifts.
Match report by Simon Barrow