Points shared in final home game
Published: 3 May 2012 09:30
ARTHURLIE played their last home game of the season on Saturday when they shared the points with Ashfield at Dunterlie Park, Barrhead.
The home side started brightly and after five minutes a long ball to the edge of the Ashfield area was controlled by Michael Keenan who showed great strength holding off two defenders before turning and shooting but Gary McLenahan made a good stop.
Just after the quarter hour mark Stephen McKeown chased a lost cause down the right wing and somehow managed to get his foot around the ball before it crossed the bye line, his high cross was met by Keenan whose downward header bounced high and brought out a fantastic reflex save from McLenahan.
On the half hour the home side deservedly took the lead, James Marks got the ball wide right and picked out Ryan Deas in the middle who fired home to open the scoring.
Ashfield weren't really at the races so far but Jamie Ewings had to be alert to save well with ten first half minutes remaining.
As the first half came to an end Arthurlie looked to have done enough to go in at the break in front but were hit by a sucker punch as after a bit of pinball inside the home penalty area the ball broke to the edge of the box where Paul Mangan shot home.
Arthurlie started to look a little tired as the second half began and Ian Chisholm was introduced to replace goal scorer Deas after eleven minutes, two minutes later Ashfield's Gary McCann showed great skill before trying his luck from the edge of the box but Alan Muir blocked his effort.
A minute later saw Shaun Fraser go into the refs book for a horrendous tackle on McKeown that could easily have been a red card, Fraser was in fact guilty of a few meaty challenges and really shouldn't have lasted the ninety minutes truth be told.
John McLay replaced Marks on twenty five minutes but it was Ashfield who were on top now for the first time in the game, on the half hour a speculative shot by Mark Thomson from distance was fumbled by Ewings but Chris Hall blasted the loose ball high over the bar squandering a great chance to put the visitors ahead.
With five minutes to go Muir played a ball across goal but it was just too far in front of McLay who had stretch full length to get his toe to it but couldn't get any power behind his effort and McLenahan smothered the effort.
Right on 90 minutes Fraser had a chance to seal the points but he was finally crowded out and the game ended all square.
Arthurlie's home league record this season has been far from impressive with only three wins and two draws from their 11 games and that is something the management team will definitely be looking to improve greatly on next season.
Arthurlie: Ewings, Lundie, Crawford, Merriman, Hodge, Muir, McKeown, Keenan, Marks, Stewart, Deas.
Subs: McLay, Chisholm, Johnston, Gallacher, Walker, McLeod, Cannon.
Last Wednesday night Arthurlie beat Largs 4-0 with the goals coming from Paul Stewart, John McLay, and a James Marks double.
Arthurlie complete their league campaign tonight, Wednesday, when they travel to face Largs Thistle kick off 7pm.