Club News

PETERHEAD 1-0 STENHOUSEMUIR 

(Aggregate 1-2)

 

By Glenn Moir

 

 

It will be another season in Scotland’s bottom tier for Peterhead after Stenhousemuir clung on to win the play-off final and promotion to League 1.

The Blue Toon, after losing the first match 2-0, were up against it for the second leg at Balmoor but they gave it a good shot.

After surviving a ropey first half, Jim McInally’s patched-up team came to life in the second period and Russell McLean gave them a lifeline with a header in the 54th minute.

Even after David McCracken saw red, Peterhead continued to probe but they were unable to force a second goal and Jack Leitch’s stoppage time dismissal just about finished off their chances.

There was plenty of effort on show but it was still a disappointing way to round off a season, which had promised so much.

Whether the target was the title, promotion or both, ultimately Peterhead have come up short.

Nobody can argue with their 76 points haul.  Few would have predicted that would not have been enough to top League 2 come May.

But points and positions count for nothing when the play-offs come around - just ask fourth-top Stenny, who finished 22 points behind Peterhead.

Brown Ferguson’s team dropped out of League 1 alongside the Blue Toon last year.

Their swift return, at the Buchan club’s expense, was brought about mainly by what happened in the second half at Ochilview on Wednesday.

Two Mick Dunlop headers had Stenny firmly in command of the tie and, really, they should have been out of sight by half-time in Aberdeenshire.

An unfit McCracken alongside a makeshift partner in Russell McLean meant Peterhead were given a torrid time, especially early on.

Mark McGuigan wasted a glorious third minute chance when he raced clean through on goal but with just Greg Fleming to beat, he blazed wildly off target.

The home rearguard was cut open again in the ninth minute, Martin Scott nodding the ball into the path of Harry Paton, whose goalbound shot was well blocked by Jamie Stevenson.

There were other scary and hairy moments for the Blue Toon supporters but their favourites got a grip and after finishing the half in a more composed fashion, they went on to dominate the second period.

Stevenson should have brought them right back into the tie four minutes after the interval.  Willie Gibson stood up a cross to the back post and after Jordon Brown headed back across goal, Stevenson sent a close-range volley over the crossbar.

Moments later, Stevenson tested Chris Smith was a powerfully-struck shot from distance and then the visiting goalkeeper tipped over a Leitch drive as Peterhead began to press.

The hosts were rewarded when McLean, who shook off a tough start to enjoy a fine match, headed in Gibson’s corner from eight yards.

Momentum was broken when McCracken was sent off in the 66th minute, the Peterhead skipper receiving a second yellow card for handball, deemed to be deliberate.

Despite being a man short, Peterhead piled numbers forward in the closing stages and substitute Aaron Norris went close with a fizzing shot before Scott Brown drove straight at Chris Smith.

With seconds left, Leitch cynically chopped down an opponent when chasing back and the game was up.  So were Stenhousemuir.

 

 

                                 Fleming

 

    Stevenson McLean McCracken McIlduff

   

                              Brown Ferry

 

                Jo.Brown   Gibson   Leitch

 

                                  Smith

Additional Info

  • Home Team Peterhead 1
  • Away Team Stenhousemuir 0 (Stenny win 2-1 on agg)
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title McLean’s header not enough to turn tie around

STENHOUSEMUIR 2-0 PETERHEAD

LEAGUE 1 PLAY-OFF FINAL 1ST LEG

 

Peterhead have it all to do in their League 1 Play-off final after two second half goals from Mick Dunlop made Stenhousemuir firm favourites.

The Stenny skipper scored with a couple of headers, capitalising on suspect defending from the visitors.

It was a disappointing night for the Blue Toon and for Rory McAllister, who missed a penalty just before half time.

McAllister failed to hit the target from the spot after Allan Smith was brought down by Mark Ferry. 

The second half belonged to Dunlop, a player who had netted just once all season.  In the space of a quarter of an hour, he managed to score two.

In the 61st minute, Dunlop got on the end of an Eddie Ferns delivery to nod past Greg Fleming and he did the same again in the 76th minute from Alan Cook’s centre.

Despite coming into the Ochilview match off the back of an eight match winning run, Peterhead were off the pace and while there is still time to turn the tie in their favour, the clock is ticking.

Additional Info

  • Home Team Stenhousemuir 2
  • Away Team Peterhead 0
  • Win/Draw/Lost Loss
  • Banner Sub Title McAllister fails from penalty spot as Stenny gain upper hand

PETERHEAD 3-0 STIRLING ALBION

(4-0 aggregate)

 

Peterhead produced a commanding and convincing display to dispatch Stirling Albion and book their place in the League 1 play-off final.

Mason Robertson, the matchwinner in the first leg at Forthbank, headed the Blue Toon in front before the break to give the Binos an uphill task.

There was no way back for the visitors once Rory McAllister netted in the second half and Jason Brown completed the scoring soon after.

A 4-0 aggregate win was eye-catching but fully deserved and Jim McInally’s men will now try to clinch promotion by defeating Stenhousemuir in a double-header.

Performances similar to the displays against Stirling will certainly give them a great chance.

Taking a one-goal lead into the Balmoor fixture, the Blue Toon had to deal with a strong wind and a fast start from Dave Mackay‘s team.

They handled both admirably with Robertson superb at the heart of the defence.

The former Stenny player was equally as effective in the opposite box and he scored the opener six minutes before half time.

Willie Gibson’s corner was delivered into a good area and Robertson powered in a header off the underside of the crossbar.

Stirling did waste a couple of gilt-edged opportunities to level either side of the interval.  Firstly, Greg Fleming’s clearance hit Darren Smith and the ball broke kindly for Ross Kavanagh, who was unable to hit the target.

Then Peter Macdonald sliced a shot wide from 10 yards after a surging run from Ross McGeachie.

Peterhead had chances as well and when McAllister doubled their lead in the 57th minute, the tie was as good as over.

Scott Brown showed awareness and composure at the edge of the box to feed McAllister, who unleashed a 14 yard drive beyond Cameron Binnie.

The Blue Toon were in no mood to ease off and they scored again eight minutes later.

Scott Brown was involved again, this time threading a clever pass through for Aidan McIlduff and his cutback was swept into the net by Jason Brown.

Stirling did well to stop the bleeding through the remainder of the match as Peterhead completely took over.

The Buchan club now prepare for a trip to Ochilview on Wednesday before welcoming Stenny to Balmoor next weekend.

 

By Glenn Moir

 

 

 

                               Fleming

Stevenson Jas.Brown Robertson McIlduff

                                 Ferry

McLean         S.Brown  Leitch      Gibson

                             McAllister

Additional Info

  • Home Team Peterhead 3
  • Away Team Stirling Albion 0
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title Blue Toon manage 4-0 aggregate win to set up Stenny showdown

PLAY-OFF SEMI FINAL 1ST LEG

Stirling Albion 0-1 Peterhead

 

Peterhead got off to a fine start in their quest to reach the League 1 Play-off Final after a narrow win away to Stirling Albion.

Mason Robertson’s first goal separated the sides but the Blue Toon will know they sill have work to do to get past the Binos.

Peterhead’s victory was their third at Forthbank this season, matching the results they recorded in December and March.

Rory McAllister went close to giving Jim McInally’s team a 10th minute lead with an effort, which rattled the frame of the goal.  The striker’s shot came back off the crossbar, via a vital touch from Cameron Binnie.

After a bright start from the visitors, they made the breakthrough in the 29th minute.  Robertson was able to force Russell McLean’s header over the line to give them a deserved interval lead.

The Blue Toon were forced into a reshuffle early in the second period when skipper David McCracken went off and was replaced by Allan Smith.

But they nearly scored a second in the 62nd minute and again it was Robertson, who saw a header cleared off the line.

From there, Peterhead were able to see the game out to give them the advantage going into Saturday’s return match at Balmoor.

Additional Info

  • Home Team Stirling Albion 0
  • Away Team Peterhead 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title Mason’s first half goal separates the sides at Forthbank

PETERHEAD 2-1 EDINBURGH CITY

Peterhead’s victory over Edinburgh City was not enough to wrestle the League 2 title away from Montrose, who drew with Elgin to be crowned champions by one point.

A dramatic final day swung to and fro but in the end the Gable Endies did just enough to pip the Blue Toon.

Jim McInally’s men needed to win their match and hope for a Montrose defeat at Links Park and by half time, Peterhead’s prospects were promising.

The Buchan team came flying out of the traps to take a third minute lead against Edinburgh, Pat Scullion putting through his own net from Willie Gibson’s corner.

It could have been two-nil in the 12th minute when Mason Robertson smashed a shot off the crossbar after another Gibson delivery.

After a lull in the play, the home support next got excited when they heard Elgin had taken the lead in Angus seconds before the interval.

All of a sudden the half-time pies tasted even better but by the time they had been properly digested, Montrose had sorted themselves out.

The Gable Endies were back level in their match, ex Blue Toon man Jamie Redman scoring the all-important goal.

Home fans were glued to their handsets hoping for more drama down the road as Peterhead tried to double their lead with Robertson and Rory McAllister going close.

Unable to score a second, the Blue Toon gave Edinburgh hope and the capital club levelled with a rare venture forward with eight minutes left.

Peterhead made heavy weather of clearing a corner and Gareth Rodger profited to stab the ball in from eight yards.

But the hosts kept going right until the end and Scott Brown restored their lead in stoppage time after Jamie Stevenson’s long throw.

However, Montrose held on in their game to ensure a helicopter to take the trophy up to Aberdeenshire would not be required.

 

 

                                Fleming

 

Jas.Brown Robertson McCracken Stevenson

 

                S.Brown Ferry Gibson Leitch

 

                            Smith  McAllister

Additional Info

  • Home Team Peterhead 2
  • Away Team Edinburgh City 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title Battling Blue Toon forced to settle for play-offs

ELGIN 0-1 PETERHEAD

Jason Brown’s second half header extended Peterhead’s winning run to five matches and ensured the League 2 title race would go down to the final day.

The former Inverness Caley Thistle defender scored the only goal at Elgin, who saw their play-off hopes come to an abrupt end.

The play-off route might yet be what the Blue Toon have to settle for after Montrose won again to remain at the top of the table.

Stewart Petrie’s team defeated Stenhousemuir at Ochilview to leave them needing just one more point to be crowned champions.

Peterhead can only keep winning and hope last day nerves kick in for their title rivals.

Brown’s goal kept their bid alive after he nodded in Willie Gibson’s delivery in the 74th minute to settle the match at Borough Briggs.

It was the tenth time the 21 year old had netted this season. 

Whether he has one more fixture, or an additional cluster of season-ending games, to add to his tally will be confirmed next weekend.

Additional Info

  • Home Team Elgin 0
  • Away Team Peterhead 1
  • Win/Draw/Lost Win
  • Banner Sub Title League 2 trophy could still end up at Balmoor after Jason’s goal
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