Saturday, 2 April 2011

Dumbarton eke out another point

This match report first appeared on the official DFC website. 

Sons seek to press the advantage
Dumbarton took one point from a 2-2 draw against Alloa Athletic, in an end-to-end game at Strathclyde Homes Stadium.

With both teams keen to get points on the board, the game started off at a lively pace. On 6 minutes Sons' Jon McShane grabbed hold of a loose ball on the edge of the area and let fly, but his shot went just over the Alloa bar.

Mark Gilhaney went on a darting run for Sons, past several visiting defenders, a couple of minutes later. But he found himself squeezed wide by the Wasps' back two.

As Sons pushed forward with determination, Craig McLeish sent over a strong cross from the left, and McShane was just short of being able to test Jamie Ewings in the Alloa goal.

Big Jim Lister threatened Sons twice at the other end. On the second occasion he beat Ben Gordon for pace, though the Dumbarton centre half recovered well and put in a skilful tackle with only Michael White in goal left to beat.

Wasps' Andy Scott also blasted high over the bar at the end of another raid. However, the majority of possession stayed with the home side, despite a number of midfield slips.

It was McLeish again, with a well-flighted free kick, who created a flurry of attacking activity for Sons on 27 minutes. But McShane's eventual header went safely into Ewings' hands.

Alloa's Kurtis Byrne slipped alarmingly behind Dumbarton's defence as the visitors pushed back. Thankfully for the home team, the ball was scrambled away.

At the other end, the Wasps worked hard to deny Sons space, but the width and pace to outflank them was not there. The home side won a series of corners, to no real effect, as the stalemate continued.

Then, seemingly out of nowhere, McLeish's efforts were rewarded. A deflection off Andy Geggan put the ball at his feet in a good position. He trapped it, steadied, and placed the ball neatly to the Alloa 'keeper's right. 1-0 to Dumbarton on 36 minutes.

Sons' Dunfermline loanee Jordan White came on to replace Pat Walker on 42 minutes. Shortly afterwards Dumbarton launched another attack. James Creaney artfully found McShane in an ideal position in front of goal, but he could not keep it down sufficiently with a powerful header.

Alloa were level just after the break, when Michael McGowan punished some slack defending with a fine turn and shot into the far corner; a shot that left White with no chance. 1-1.

Sons struck back immediately and decisively. Andy Geggan took his chance just inside the area well, with a polished finish on 48 minutes - making it 2-1 to Dumbarton, to the delight of a vocal home support.

Then Sons threatened Alloa further with three successive corners ten minutes later. From the second one, Gordon's close-range, dipping header was only just tipped over the bar by Jamie Ewings.

The Wasps 'keeper was in action again shortly, diving to thwart a bursting run from McShane, as Sons looked to make the game safe.

However, Byrne came close to equalising for Alloa when the ball reached him at the edge if the area after a fluent, passing move. In thecend he lost his balance at the crucial moment.

Martin McNiff replaced Craig McLeish for Sons on 73 minutes. Wasps upped the pace, however, and Dumbarton found themselves defending too deeply. Five minutes later McGowan claimed his second goal of the afternoon to equalise at 2-2, driving high past White.

In a last throw of the dice, Sons gaffer Alan Adamson brought on Keiran Brannan for Ryan McStay. After an attacking flourish Alloa continued to pressurise. Michael White saved well from a low, fast and sharply angled free kick.

Dumbarton enjoyed a final flourish and came close on two occasions after flooding the Alloa area. But in neither side could add further goals, and the draw was a fair reflection of the balance of play.

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