Montrose 3 Arbroath 0MONTROSE picked up three welcome points in their fight against relegation with a well-deserved home win over promotion-chasing Arbroath.
The visitors were looking for their first win of 2015, but nevertheless brought a sizeable travelling support up the coast.
But it was Montrose who started more strongly, Garry Wood coming close in the second minute with an overhead kick that dropped over the crossbar. Marvin Andrews then came close to opening the scoring two minutes later, the veteran centre back bulleting a header over the bar from a Ross McCord corner.
Arbroath's first clear-cut chance came in the 15th minute when Bobby Linn curled a free kick wide of the post from five yards outside the box. At the other end, McCord blasted a long-range free kick high and wide.
Ross Campbell could have opened the scoring in the 22nd minute when he turned his marker, but his 20-yard shot flew over the crossbar.
Linn should have put Arbroath ahead in the 23rd minute when he advanced into the box, but his shot was blocked, the ball rebounding off Jonathan Crawford and out for a corner.
Paul McManus passed up an even better chance in the 26th minute, swiping at Linn's chipped cross when free in the box, the ball rolling out for a goal kick.
The let-off proved crucial, as Montrose opened the scoring with their next foray forwards. Campbell squared the ball across the box for the on-rushing GRAHAM WEBSTER. The former Dundee man took a touch before powering the ball across visiting goalkeeper Marc McCallum and into the top corner.
McManus's touch appeared to have deserted him, as he passed up another gilt-edged chance in the 32nd minute, slicing a shot wide of the post when unmarked on the edge of the six yard box.
McCallum did well to save a low Ross McCord drive in the 34th minute, and Garry Wood headed over from a McCord free kick four minutes later.
The final chance of the first half fell to Arbroath's Kieran Stewart, the midfielder's shot from the edge of the box tipped wide by Stuart McKenzie.
The second half started in perfect fashion for Montrose, the home side doubling their lead after just three minutes. Wood laid the ball off to ROSS CAMPBELL on the edge of the box, the former Forfar striker firing a shot into the bottom corner.
Montrose had to remain alert, McKenzie called into action two minutes later when Linn turned Andrews and shot low.
But it was Montrose who were celebrating in the 52nd minute when then went three goals ahead. Webster's cross from the right wing found Scott Johnston at the far post, the winger knocking the ball down for ROSS CAMPBELL to blast into the net from close range.
McKenzie was called into action again minutes later, tipping the ball over from a Scott McBride header.
Montrose should have gone four ahead just after the hour mark during a goalmouth scramble, but neither Wood nor McCord could apply the finish. Wood also came close a minute later, flicking the ball onto the Arbroath post from an Andrew Steeves cross.
McKenzie was the hero again in the 63rd minute, tipping McBride's 25-yard free kick over the crossbar. Shortly afterwards, Stewart sent a free kick over the bar from 25 yards out.
Substitute Kevin Buchan shook Montrose's nerves in the 69th minute when his shot from the edge of the box crashed against the crossbar and out of play.
Ryan McGeevar headed wide at the back post as Arbroath's attempted comeback ran out of time.
Match Report by Mark Rae