University of Stirling 1 – 3 East Stirlingshire
Lowland League, Forthbank, 17/11/19
By Lewis Fraser
East Stirlingshire did enough to come out on top against local rivals Stirling University on Sunday.
Shire move up to third in the Lowland League after a fiery affair at Forthbank, which finished 3-1 to the visitors.
Despite the defeat, Uni boss Chris Geddes was upbeat about his side’s performance,
“I think we more than matched a team who are up at the top of the league challenging for the title. It’s disappointing to lose but we have still seen a lot of positives.”
Action: Match highlights courtesy of East Stirlingshire’s Shire TV.
Geddes played down any notion of “bad blood” between the teams, after a game that was not short of strong challenges.
“There’s no bad blood, their fans like to shout a lot and I think that filters down on to the pitch,” he continued. “The last five or six weeks we’ve been on a tough run, we’ve played Kelty twice, Bonnyrigg Rose twice, BSC Glasgow, East Kilbride and East Stirlingshire today. I’ll judge my players on the next six weeks, where we play lots of teams around us in the league.”
The first half was one of few chances, but it was East Stirlingshire who took the lead after 22 minutes. Shire were awarded a free kick deep inside their own half, and it was goalkeeper Jamie Barclay’s long ball that caused problems in the University defence. The ball eventually fell to Sean Brown whose shot went under Andy Downie and into the net.
The students replied in first half stoppage time when Jason Jarvis’s ball into the box went straight to Jamie Barclay, who could only parry it out into the path of Shire defender Eddie Malone. The ball bounced off Malone and into the net to give the University their equaliser.
However, five minutes into the second half, Shire were back in front thanks to a goal from former Stirling Albion striker Peter MacDonald. Jordan Tapping, who the University thought was offside, chested the ball into the path of MacDonald, who did well to scoop the ball over Downie.
On 69 minutes, Shire almost doubled their advantage after MacDonald headed just wide of the right hand post, thanks to a dangerous delivery from Sean Brown. But Shire sealed the three points on the 75th minute. A corner from Andy Rodgers to the near post was once again met by Peter MacDonald, and he headed home into the far corner.
Although the University had been competitive for most of the match, their best chances did not come until the final 10 minutes. Craig Brown tested Jamie Barclay from just outside the box, and Barclay did well to tip Brown’s strike over the bar, as it was headed for the top corner.
On the stroke of full time, substitute Kieran Hall could not believe his close range shot did not find goal, as Barclay somehow pulled off another miraculous save.
Uni remain 10th in the table, and travel to Gretna on Saturday.
University: A.Downie, Mailer, Webb, Quigley, C. Downie (Jainta 62’), Berry, Emmott (McMaster 53’), Doan, Jarvis, Cowley (Hall 73’), Brown
Shire: Barclay, Orr, Murray, Tapping, Malone, Horne, Rodgers (Barr 75’) Duncan, Brown, Flynn (Griffiths 82’), MacDonald (Sweeney 84’)