Ladbrokes League 1
Saturday 23rd December 2017
Albion Rovers 3 (Shields 23’, Trouten 25’, McLaughlin 72’)
East Fife 2 (Dunsmore 6’, G Hurst 27’))
Albion Rovers XI: Potts, Lightbody, McLaughlin, Reid, Perry, Holmes, Fisher, Davidson, Shields, Trouten (Higgins 31’), Victoria (Watters 85’)
Subs: McMullin, McLeish, Guthrie, Trialist, Hopkins
East Fife XI: M Hurst, Dusnmore (Kane 38’), Docherty, Page, Piggott, Lamont (Reilly 65’), G Hurst, Millar, Linton, Duggan, Wilkie (Mutch 80’)
Subs: Wilson, Flanagan, Goodfellow
Referee: Barry Cook
Inconsistency again proved to be East Fife’s downfall as they slipped to their second successive defeat after a promising opening 45 minutes against Albion Rovers at Cliftonhill Stadium. Manager Darren Young made one change to the side that lost to Ayr United last time out with Greg Hurst replacing injured captain Kevin Smith in the starting line-up.
It was the visitors who started brightest with Kyle Wilkie having a sight of goal on 4 minutes after good play by Mark Lamont down the right but he dragged his shot wide of the left-hand post before East Fife took the lead a couple of minutes later. Jonathan Page picked out Aaron Dunsmore wide of the right who cut inside before sending a left-footed shot past Rovers’ ‘keeper Daniel Potts for his first senior goal.
The home side began to grow into the game and had their first chance on 18 minutes when Alan Trouten had an attempt on goal but his strike was never going to trouble Mark Hurst in the East Fife goal. Graeme Holmes was next to have a go but couldn’t find the target with a shot from 25-yards. Rovers levelled the game on 22 minutes when Hurst misjudged a shot from Conor Shields before Alan Touten put the home side in front a couple of minutes later when he finished off a quick break from Scott McLaughlin down the left.
They weren’t in front for long, however, when Greg Hurst capitalised on a poor clearance from Potts to pass the ball into an empty net on 27 minutes. Joao Victoria flashed a shot across goal for the home side on 31 minutes before Potts saved comfortable held a free kick from Lamont at the other end as half time approached.
Albion Rovers should have been back in front shortly after the re-start when Shield’s shot was well blocked by Hurst only for Victoria to head the rebound wide of target. By now the home side were in the ascendency and had another chance on 57 minutes when former Fifer Gary Fisher was unlucky to see his 25-yard drive rebound off the post. The visitors almost grabbed an equaliser in bizarre fashion when Holmes attempted clearance rebounded off Chris Duggan and looked headed for the bottom corner but Potts was alert to scramble the ball clear.
Lamont sent a shot over the bar on 62 minutes before the home side scored what proved to be the winner when McLaughlin found the bottom corner with a free kick from the edge of the box on 72 minutes.
East Fife faded badly in the second half after a promising opening 45 with the home side running out deserved winners in the end.