Nine man Shipyard edged out by late goal.
The Shipyard were on the receiving end of some baffling decisions but can hold their heads high after turning in a gritty, battling and never say die performance in the second half as decision after decision seemed to go against them. Blair Smart replaced the unavailable Craig McKay in the centre of defence and there were starting places for new signings Grant Blyth and Andy MacDonald. Stevie Connor returned from injury while Lee Henderson and Gavin Bridges dropped to the bench. Ewan Fotheringham was out through injury.
Ormiston were first to show and Brian McEwan Shot just wide after a good move down the left hand side. However, it was the Shipyard who took the lead with a superb goal in the 9th minute. Dale Robertson burst down the right and his cross was volleyed in at the back post by Grant Blyth. Ormiston replied with a Craig Fisher free-kick but it was straight at Jordan Mushet. Brendan Napier then burst through the home defence but his shot was weak and didn’t trouble David Simmonds in the Ormiston goals. Just a minute later a free-kick found its way through the visitors defence and McEwan was again not too far away. Midway through the half Mushet stood up well to block from Scott Wright before a Connor free-kick was headed away for a corner. A Robertson pass sent Kevin Masson racing in on goal but the defender did well to get a foot in and avert the danger. Blyth then saw a snap shot from the edge of the box drift well wide. Ormiston drew level from the penalty spot after Mushet pulled off a good save but Smart was adjudged to have impeded the Ormiston player as they went for the ball and the referee awarded a penalty. Fisher confidently dispatched the kick beyond Mushet. Masson went in for a tackle in front of the home technical area and they all screamed for a yellow card and the ref duly obliged. A minute or two later we had an identical scenario as Masson went in to challenge at the same area. Again we had screams for a yellow card and again the ref obliged and Masson was off.
The start of the second half saw Bridges replace Smart at the heart of the Shipyard defence. It was the ten men who took control of the second half as a Craig Lowe header from a Napier cross was held by Simmonds then twice in a minute the visitors went very close. Simmonds was at full stretch to keep out a Napier shot after he strode forward and then from the resultant corner Lowe again got his head to the ball from Napier’s corner but he could not keep it on target. The next action saw Ormiston break forward and when Stuart Blake brought down the forward at the edge of the area, everyone, Shipyard and Ormiston alike were absolutely stunned when the referee gave Blakey a straight red card. A booking at most was the general feeling amongst everyone. It was not a clear goal scoring opportunity as the player was drifting wide and there were Shipyard defenders between the incident and the goals. Next to go was Shipyard manager Myles Allan for enquiring why his team had not been given a free-kick. An Ormiston official had been sent away from the touchline in the first half for also asking for a free-kick. The Shipyard were up against it now with over half an hour to play but they were defending well and keeping opportunities for the home side to a minimum, though Richard Weir should have done better from around six yards out. The Shipyard had a good chance in the 64th minute when the ball broke quickly to Blyth in the area but his shot was sklaffed and finished well wide of the target. Ormiston had a good spell of pressure as Wright headed wide, Bridges headed a shot off the line and Mushet tipped a strike over the bar. The Shipyard had a penalty appeal waved away when sub Adam Doig went down in the box after he beat a couple of men on the edge and looked to bore down on goal. With seven minutes remaining Napier showed unbelievable skill inside the Ormiston box as he beat man after man before his placed shot drifted agonisingly wide of the far post. Ormiston then went up the park and scored the winning goal that they did not merit. The ball was worked down the right hand side and when it was crossed into the box Conor Ramage had plenty time and space to roll the ball into the unguarded net. The last action of the match saw the referee produce another red card, this time to an Ormiston player who had allegedly pushed the Shipyard keeper after he punted the ball up field.
After the match an angry, disappointed and disillusioned manager Myles said “Firstly, the first half performance from us was poor and we were lucky to go in level at half time. We did score an excellent goal at the end of a good move. But our defending wasn’t good enough and was an absolute shambles for their equaliser resulting in a stonewall penalty. The second half was a farce because of the sending’s off. I’ll choose my words carefully as its common knowledge that the officials are the only folk in the game that can’t be called into question. There were some baffling decisions today, some for us and some against us. There wasn’t a bad challenge in the game yet this referee somehow found a reason to show a red card three times and sent myself and one of their management team away for asking him a question. Some of the decisions today were laughable”. Myles went on to say “I know that it’s impossible for every referee to get assessed every week but when I can get my decisions questioned by our committee if they feel I’ve made a mistake and our players won’t keep their place if they perform badly, who will this referee be accountable to? When asked what he thought about his team’s showing in the second half he said “I’m proud of the way the players performed in the second half. To play for so long with 9 men and come off the pitch gutted that we didn’t get three points let alone one shows how well they did in the second half. We still created plenty chances and Craig Lowe had two headers, Grant Blyth had a good chance and Brendan was an inch away from scoring just 60 seconds before they got the winner. We’ll need to show the same workrate up in Inverurie next week but these guys are capable of doing themselves justice if they approach the game in the right way.”
Teams: Ormiston: Simmonds; Riding; Adams (Auld); McKenzie; Guiney; Weir; Miller (Innes); Fisher; Ramage (Pontone); Wright; McEwan;
Burntisland Shipyard: Mushet; MacDonald; Connor; Clark; Smart (Bridges); Blake; Robertson; Lowe; Masson; Napier; Blyth (Doig). Unused Subs: Henderson, Bell & Morrison.
Referee: A. Spalding.