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Peterhead 1 Stranraer 3

Fri 11 Nov 2011

The task ahead of new Peterhead manager Jim McInally will have become a little clearer to the former Morton and East Stirling boss after Stranraer comfortably took the points on his debut in the Blue Toon dugout.

McInally had taken charge of a bounce game against Brechin City during the week and had seen enough from makeshift centre-half Gary Wood that he pitched the on-loan Ross County striker into the same role in this game, while midfielder Paul Watson stepped in at left-back.

Bryan Deasley was restored the left flank, while Ryan Strachan joined Barry Sellars in the middle of the park.

And Peterhead had an early chance, though Rory McAllister dragged his low shot wide of the near post from the edge of the penalty area.

But the fragile home defence was breached after just 12 minutes. Chris Aitken's corner found defender Frank McKeown unchallenged in the middle of the penalty area, and he didn't even have to jump to head his side in front.

And Keith Knox's side could have doubled their lead soon after. Sean Winter picked out Grant Gallagher with a pass, and the winger opened his foot up well but shot narrowly over the bar.

Chances at either end were scarce at this point, but Martin Bavidge seemed caught in two minds about what to do as he chased onto a clipped Sellars pass just before the half-hour. In the end he opted to pass, but failed to find Deasley.

And six minutes before the interval, Peterhead were punished again. Watson and Callum Macdonald could only half-clear a ball from the left between them, and when the latter's clearance fell to Stephen Stirling, he fired a 20-yard shot into the net.

McInally changed things with the introduction of Scott Ross to the midfield and Alan Rattray to the defence, and to their credit, Peterhead began to get closer to their opposition.

Indeed, they pulled a goal back midway through the second half, McAllister heading home a Deasley corner to give his side a chance.

The good work was almost undone immediately as Stranraer sub Michael Moore was allowed to head narrowly wide just two minutes later, but Peterhead were to have their best spell over the next ten minutes.

They could have been level after Bavidge worked space to clip a ball towards the back post, but Deasley's diving header flew tamely across the face of goal.

Moore had another chance to make the points safe when he turned on a Gallagher pass, only to see his effort palmed away by Paul Jarvie, but the striker finally got on the scoresheet in the final minute when, looping a header beyond Jarvie from another Gallagher cross.

PETERHEAD: Jarvie, Donald, Watson (Rattray 55), Strachan, Wood, Macdonald, Conway (Ross 55), Bavidge, McAllister, Sellars (Wyness 66), Deasley. Subs not used: Davidson, Jellema (gk). Booked: Strachan, Wood, Macdonald, Bavidge, Rattray, Ross.

STRANRAER: David Mitchell, Kane, Noble, Taggart, McKeown, Aitken (Danny Mitchell 58), Gallagher, Stirling, Malcolm, Grehan (Moore 65), Winter. Subs not used: McColm, Shephard, Marshall (gk). Booked: Moore.

Attendance: 405