More late woe for the Shipyard
After the euphoria of Tuesday night’s victory over Cowdenbeath the Shipyard were brought back down to earth when after a lacklustre performance Berwick Rangers Reserves took all three points thanks to a last minute goal from Greg Smith. The Shipyard was dealt a double blow before kick off as both Craig Hatton and Tuesday night’s trialist were ruled out through injury. Liall Robertson returned to the starting eleven after illness. Lee Small and Callum Bissett were both available and took their places on the bench.
Berwick had an early attempt when Greg Smith shot across the face of goal, then Sam Todd should have done better when one on one with the keeper. In the 13th minute Conor Drury showed good skill to bring down a high ball played to him but his left foot shot did not trouble Sandison in the Berwick goals. By the twentieth minute mark the Shipyard were getting more into the match and forced a few corners. The Shipyard took the lead through a fine set piece goal in the 31st minute when Lamont’s flighted free kick was glanced home by the head of Stuart Gray. A Hamilton free kick a couple of minutes later was not too far away as it drifted wide.
Drury created a chance for himself three minutes into the second half but his shot lacked the power to trouble Sandison. At the other end Maz Melia did well to block Smith’s effort and Doris went close at the near post as Berwick tried to get level. Just before the hour mark Liall Robertson found himself in a race to the ball with keeper Sandison at the edge of the box. Both players got there at the same time and Robertson came off worst in the 50-50 challenge and had to be replaced by Small after picking up a foot injury. In the 63rd minute Melia had to punch clear under pressure and a minute later Berwick were awarded a penalty when Wilson fouled Sam Todd in the box. Todd took the kick himself and slammed the ball into the net. Todd was causing the Shipyard defence problems and he shot wide in the 70th minute. The Shipyard were furious two minutes later when the referee ignored their pleas for a penalty after what looked like a blatant foul in the box. However, within thirty seconds he did award the Shipyard a penalty when he penalised Fairbairn for what looked like an innocuous challenge on Neish. Mark Brough converted the kick comfortably beating Sandison. In the 77th minute Ramsey shot narrowly wide with a powerful drive from the angle of the box. Berwick drew level with seven minutes to go when Jonathon Fairbairn lost his marker at the back post and nodded in from six yards. The Shipyard were then reduced to ten men when Mike Brown received a straight red card for a poor challenge in the middle of the park. Two minutes from time Gray got on the end of another free kick but could not place his header on target. Finlayson dragged his shot wide from just inside the box before Berwick grabbed a late winner. The Shipyard conceded possession just inside their own half and Berwick flooded forward and at about the third attempt by a Berwick player, Greg Smith managed to knock the ball in for the winner.
Shipyard manager Billy Whitehead was disappointed after the game and said “no doubt we missed Hatton today, however, we did not play anything like as well as we could and the goals we lost were all highly avoidable”.
Teams: Burntisland Shipyard: Melia; Brown; Brough; Gray; Whyte; Drury; Hamilton; Lamont (Grubb); Neish; Robertson (Small); Wilson. Unused Sub: Bissett.
Berwick Rangers Reserves: Sandison; Brady; Bennett; Fairbairn; Ramsey; Gill; Doris; Todd; Miller; Finlayson; Smith. Subs: Rendall; Robertson; Linton; Tufail.
Referee: P. Hanlon.