Stranraer 0 Montrose 1
After making the longest possible midweek journey, Montrose were faced with a naturally heavy pitch that made attractive, flowing football difficult for both sides.
The home side started brightly with Stirling’s pass finding Elliott whose shot was easily held by Fleming. Soon after, Fleming had to look alert once more, diving to his left to save a Hamill free kick that was headed goal-ward.
With almost 10mins gone, Montrose created a good chance when Masson was alive to a ball that hit the corner flag, when the defence assumed it was running out, and when the midfielder found McLean he fired the ball across the face of goal, agonisingly just out of reach of Johnston.
Back came the visitors and a dangerous Hamill cross to the far post had to be cleared by Webster.
There then followed a penalty shout at both ends, with neither given. First, Elliott, who proved a handful all evening, went over under the challenge of two Montrose defenders and waving play on, the ball transitioned to the other end where Webster threaded a ball through to Johnston, who went over under pressure from Hamill but again, the ref, Pete Stuart was not interested.
Before the break, Elliott was involved in another penalty shout, but with Allan clearly pulling out of the challenge, the winger received a card for simulation
If the first half was even, and largely uneventful, the home side started the second half strongly, and it seemed only a matter of time before their pressure and dominance would produce a goal.
Stranraer’s Allan delivered a number of dangerous set pieces that were begging to be finished, but the Montrose back line stood firm, with Quinn and Allan putting in fantastic shifts.
At the other end, Montrose almost took the lead against the run of play when Watson delivered a deep cross to the back post, but despite rising well, Webster’s header back across the goal was incredibly headed off the line by Cummins, who was sitting on his knees, having fallen over when attempting to meet the earlier cross.
As at the weekend, Petrie’s substitutions made an instant impact with Cammy F chipping a delicate ball for McLean, whose cross found the other sub Campbell, but his out stretched effort went just wide.
Montrose were starting to take control and with just over 15mins left, the single piece of quality arrived. After great footwork again by Cammy F, he fed Campbell whose scuffed cross fell to McLean 12 yards out and he calmly guided his left foot effort into the top corner, giving Currie no chance.
The home side, obviously deflated, struggled to mount a real challenge towards the end and a few half chances fell the way of the visitors on the counter attack, but the pitch put paid to any further goals.
A great result that moves Montrose above East Fife into a play off spot with a trip to Methil next up at the weekend.
Team Lineups & Stats
SPFL League 1
Tuesday 10th March 2020
|22||Jamie Hammill (c)
|11||Joao Victoria (s67)
||16||Craig Johnston (s67)
||8||Paul Watson (c)
|23||Ryan Thomson (s80)
||7||Graham Webster (s71)
||19||Liam Callaghan (s64)
|10||Denny Johnstone (s67)
||22||Cmmy F Ballantyne (s64)
||15||Ross Campbell (s67)
|20||Dean Fyffe (s80)
||9||Lewis Hawke (s71)
|21||Dale Burgess (GK)
||21||Aaron Lennox (GK)|
Paul O'Neill, Gary Train