GOWFERS were back on league business on Saturday when they welcomed St Andrews United to Laing Park for their return match in the ACA Sports East Super League.
St Andrews put early pressure on Carnoustie, but a deep cross by McInness was too strong and drifted out the far side for a goal kick.
The homesters were awarded a free kick on the halfway line when Ramsay fouled Robertson, but Bennett was quickly off his line to claim Gates’ ball into the box.
Perera then fed a good ball through to Calum Watson, but his shot across goal was touched past by the ‘keeper and Clark’s corner was cleared strongly upfield. Clark was then fouled 35 yards out by McMullan, but his shot was blocked by the defensive wall.
In 27 minutes Gates was booked for a foul on Ramsay, but Fotheringham’s kick into box was too strong and McCafferty allowed it to run past for a goal kick.
Four minutes later the deadlock was broken. Robertson fouled Ramsay on the edge of the box and the free-kick was swung in by P. Watson for DIGNAN to head strongly past McCafferty from close in.
Perera then put a good ball through for McIlravey to run on to, but Buchan got back to clear for a corner. When Clark’s flag kick was cleared the ball fell to Gates, but his shot was well over. In 34 minutes McMullan was booked for dissent.
The Gowfers had another good chance when a ball from Robertson was headed on by Perera to Calum Watson, but he shot narrowly past from 15 yards.
Three minutes from the break Carnoustie got a deserved equalizer when McIlravey forced a corner on the right off Fotheringham. Clark’s fine kick from the corner flag caused panic in the St Andrews defense and in the ensuing scramble CALUM WATSON forced the ball over the line.
Half time: Carnoustie Panmure 1, St Andrews United 1.
The visitors started the second half off at a great pace and a cross by McInness was headed out for a corner by Hendry. The kick was taken by McInness and headed goalward by Dignan, but again Hendry was on hand to clear for another corner. This time McInness’ kick was fired over the bar by P. Watson.
St Andrews kept the pressure up and Ramsay fed a fine ball through to Rattray, but Gates was alert to the threat and cleared up the park. Then, a Buchan cross was headed out for another corner by Millar but this was wasted by P. Watson when his kick was far too strong and went out for throw at far side.
Gowfers finally got out of their own half with a great run up the left by Gates and when his shot from the angle of the box was pushed out by Bennett, Clark unfortunately fired the loose ball past from 10 yards.
In 61mins when a long throw by Patrick was headed clear by Perera to Gates, Buchan was booked for pulling the Carnoustie man down. Another throw by Patrick into the Carnoustie box was headed clear by Perera, but Dignan’s shot was straight at McCafferty.
Then McCafferty, Millar and Dignan who were chasing a long ball back, tumbled just outside the box resulting in a free-kick for the visitors. Although McInness got his kick past the defensive wall, McCafferty held it well.
In 72 minutes Perera was booked for dissent. The homesters were then awarded a free-kick on the right for a foul on McIlravey by McRae, but Clark’s kick was well held by Bennett. The ‘keeper again did well when Clark curled in a free-kick, but Bennett held the ball under the bar.
In 82 minutes the Saint’s Ramsay and McInness were replaced by Suttie and Sutherland. Sutherland wasn’t long on the park when he had a chance for glory from a corner on the right by P. Watson, but he shot weakly at McCafferty from a good position.
With three minutes left, Roberts was booked for a foul on Rattray. St Andrews’ two substitutes then combined to create an opening, but Sutherland blasted over from 25 yards.
McIlravey was then replaced by Johnston. St Andrews forced a corner off Tonner in the dying seconds, but much to Carnoustie’s relief P. Watson’s kick was way over everyone and out the far side.
Carnoustie Panmure: McCafferty, Gates, Hendry, Robertson, Millar, Tonner, McIlravey (Johnston 88), Clark, C. Watson, Roberts, Perera. Substitutes not used: Narey, Matthew and Ferrie (GK).
St Andrews United: Bennett, Fotheringham, McMullan, Patrick, Buchan, McRae, Dignan, Ramsay (Suttie 82), McInness (Sutherland 82), P. Watson, Rattray. Substitutes not used: Wilson, Porteus, Farquharson and Sloan (GK).
Tomorrow (Saturday) the Gowfers are back on the road as they head for Keir’s Park to meet Hill of Beath Hawthorn in the ACA Sports East Super League. With them having come off second best on their last three visits there, Keir’s Park is not exactly a happy hunting ground, and with the Haws sitting in second place in the table just five points adrift of the leaders, Linlithgow Rose, but with four games in hand, this visit is hardly likely to be any easier. Tomorrow’s tie gets underway at 2.30 p.m. and the supporter’s bus leaves the Stag’s Head Inn at 12.30 p.m.
ACA Sports East Super League
P W L D F A Pts
Linlithgow 16 9 4 3 36 25 30
Hill of Beath 12 7 1 4 27 14 25
Camelon 14 6 4 4 25 22 22
Bonnyrigg 11 6 2 3 28 17 21
Bathgate 16 5 5 6 25 29 21
Bo’ness 9 4 2 3 13 10 15
Kelty Hearts 12 4 5 3 14 15 15
Musselburgh 13 3 7 3 29 34 12
St Andrews 13 3 7 3 20 30 12
Lochee Utd 11 2 6 3 17 23 9
Carn Pan. 11 1 7 3 12 27 6