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Peterhead 1 Berwick Rangers 0

Mon 08 Oct 2012

Substitute Stephen Maguire bagged his first Peterhead goal with 13 minutes to go as the Blue Toon arrested their recent slump in form to claim victory over Berwick Rangers.

It was hard going, though, with the visitors having two goals chopped off in the dying stages.

Dean Cowie and Martin Bavidge both dropped out through injury following the humiliating Scottish Cup defeat to Deveronvale, both having taken ankle knocks, while Maguire had dropped to the bench.

Scott Ross returned from suspension, and Ryan Strachan from having his tonsils removed, while Robbie Winters took the place of Bavidge.

It was Ian Little’s Wee Rangers side who created the better chances in the first period, though perhaps not as many as their play deserved.

Paul Jarvie was called into action for the first time when Lee Currie’s cross found Chris Townsley at the back post. The centre-back headed powerfully from point-blank range, forcing the goalkeeper into a fine save.

And Jarvie was the Blue Toon hero again on the half-hour when he charged off his line to deny Stuart Noble following a short headed-passback from Ross.

The Blue Toon had been struggling to create anything in front of goal, long balls out of defence struggling to find either Winters or Rory McAllister.

But three minutes from the interval, the latter brought down a diagonal pass from Ross on the edge of the area, before seeing his effort claimed at the second attempt by Berwick keeper Youssef Bejaoui.

Peterhead did improve after the interval, but could have found themselves behind when Kevin McDonald’s angled strike flashed just beyond Jarvie’s left-hand upright.

McAllister had another chance shortly after weaving into the box following Callum Macdonald’s pass. The striker slipped, though, as he pulled the trigger, leaving Bejaoui with a simple save at his near post.

The prolific striker was becoming more and more threatening, and his cross from the left was narrowly over the head of Winters just after the hour mark.

Two minutes later, McAllister seized on Devon Jacobs’ misjudgement to put the Berwick goal under further pressure, but a combination of defender Douglas Bryden and goalkeeper Bejaoui saw the ball turned over the bar.

The breakthrough finally came after 77 minutes. Steven Noble win the ball in midfield and sent substitute Bryan Deasley haring away down the left. He crossed low, with McAllister’s step-over leaving Maguire the simplest of tap-ins.

Berwick thought they had levelled ten minutes later when Fraser McLaren tapped home, but Steven Notman was penalised for his challenge on Jarvie in the lead-up to the goal.

Two minutes later, Notman’s cross was flicked on by Damon Geilty for Dean Hoskins to bundle home at the back post, but Hoskins had strayed into an offside position and again the effort was ruled out.

PETERHEAD: Paul Jarvie, Ross Smith (Bryan Deasley, 56), Steven Noble, Scott Ross, Callum Macdonald, Ryan Harding, Ryan Strachan, Jamie Redman, Rory McAllister (Darren Kelly, 86), Robbie Winters (Stephen Maguire, 69), Scott McLaughlin. Subs not used: Jake Fitzgerald, Marc McCallum (gk).

Booked: Redman.

BERWICK RANGERS: Youssef Bejaoui, Devon Jacobs, Dean Hoskins, Douglas Bryden, Chris Townsley, Lee Currie (Damon Geilty, 81), Steven Notman, Neil Janczyk, Stuart Noble (Darren Lavery, 59), Phillip Addison (Fraser McLaren, 59), Kevin McDonald. Subs not used: Andy McLean, Ian McCaldon (gk)

Booked: Hoskins.

Attendance: 455