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Berwick Rangers 2 Shire 2

Shire picked up their second away point of the season as they came from behind twice to draw 2-2 with Berwick Rangers, in the bottom of the table clash. Things started badly for Shire as they conceded a cheap goal from a corner after three minutes, but unlike recent performances, they weathered the resulting storm and came back into the match. Shire’s equaliser came from a speculative Neil McCabe shot which bounced deceptively, fooling Berwick keeper Kevin Walker.

In the second half, Shire gifted Berwick a goal when Richie Barnard’s clearance went straight to Darren Lavery, giving the Berwick hitman an empty goal to score into. But it took just over a minute for Shire to equalise as determined play from Aron Lynas set up the situation for Tommy Orr to have a tap-in.

Both teams had great chances to score the winner, but the two relegation play-off contenders had to settle for a point. Not only was this only Shire’s second away point, it is only the second time they had come back from 1-0 down to take points.

Shire’s next tie is an away trip to Hampden Park to play Queen’s Park, hoping to build upon the spirited draw.

Craig Tully made two changes, going to a 3-4-3 formation: bringing Connor Greene and Aron Lynas in for Michael McMullin and Jordan Cairnie.

Berwick won a corner in the 3rd minute, and from it, they took the lead. Finn Graham delivered a ball towards the near post where Jordan McGregor beat his man to head past Barnard.

The home side looked to double their lead, but were denied by a combination of poor finishing, brave Shire defending and the offside flag.

Shire started to grow into the game, and came close from a Kris Faulds’ free-kick which forced keeper Kevin Walker into a parried save, and only brave defending from Robert Wilson prevented Andrew Russell from getting to the rebound.

And then Shire equalised. They had managed to pass the ball around without penetrating the Berwick defence. So when the ball came back to Neil McCabe it was frustration that made him try his luck from 30 yards " but the ball bounced just in front of the Wee Gers’ keeper, deceiving him enough for the ball to bounce over him and into the back of the net.

Berwick came close to restoring their lead as Graham cut the ball back across the penalty box towards the unmarked Darren Lavery, only to be denied by Connor Greene’s superb block.

Kevin Walker nearly handed Shire a second goal as he came and missed Aron Lynas’ speculative long-ball, but once again Wilson was there to clear up.

Late in the first half, Shire came close from a Scott Ferries’ corner, but the ball would never quite sit for any of the numerous Shire players " and Berwick just about managed to clear.

The home side, though, should have gone in at half-time in front. McGregor broke down the left-wing, and although the Shire defence recovered, Lavery managed to pick out the unmarked Sandy Cunningham who blasted the ball centimetres wide of the far post.

Shire started the second half strongly with Faulds shooting just over from the edge of the box, but as the half wore on, the game became more stretched with large spaces appearing in the centre of the park.

Berwick created a couple of threatening chances with both Graham and Cunningham forcing Barnard into good saves.

They should have taken the lead when Lavery headed the ball down to Cunningham, who from close-range, was denied by a magnificent save from Barnard using his chest.

But then, Shire handed Berwick a goal. A hopeful long-ball towards the left-wing looked like it was being dealt with by Barnard, but instead, he drilled his clearance straight to Lavery’s feet, who was left with a simple finish.

76 seconds later, though, it was 2-2. Brilliant, determined play from Lynas saw him break to the byline, and he picked out Tommy Orr who was left with a tap-in from 6 yards.

Then Kevin Walker nearly handed Shire a third goal when, out on the wing, he cleared straight to Faulds " but the ball bounced forcing him to volley just over. A mistake from the Berwick keeper nearly set up Shire again when he miskicked a pass-back, but unfortunately, the ball span away from the pressing Gavin McMillan.

Tommy Orr nearly got his second as his meandering run saw him break down the left-wing and into the box, but just as he was pulling the trigger, a last-gasp block from a Berwick defender saw his shot loop over.

Shire had the last chance of the game, but unfortunately, Faulds shot over.

Teams:

Berwick Rangers: Kevin Walker, Beveridge, Wilson, McGregor, Crane, Allan Walker, Stevenson (Morris 61), Michael McKenna (Henderson 72), Graham, Cunningham, Lavery.

Subs not Used: Coultress, Watt, Denton, Walters (GK)

Goals: McGregor 3, Lavery 69

Booked: McGregor, Michael McKenna.

Shire: Barnard, Greene, Townsley, Fisher, Lynas (Kay 86), Faulds, McCabe, Kinnaird, Russell (Orr 63), David McKenna (McMillan 77), Ferries.

Subs not Used: Cairnie, Donaldson, Dolan (GK), McMullin.

Goals: McCabe 16, Orr 70.

Booked: Fisher

Referee: Craig Napier

Attendance: 359.

Ross Comes On Board

The club has completed the signing of former Clyde defender Ross Fisher after his successful two gamer stint as a trialist.


The 22 year old was released by The Bully Wee late last year and had received offers from junior teams in his native Ayrshire but opted to remain in the senior game with Shire.

It’s the second successive January transfer window switch for the player, who is just as comfortable in a midfield role; he joined Clyde 12 months ago after a season at Arbroath and he has also turned out for Queen’s Park and Brechin City after coming through Kilmarnock’s youth set-up.

"We haven’t had too much to smile about in the last couple of games," said Shire head coach Craig Tully. "But plenty of people who have been at the two matches Ross has played as a trialist have said how impressed they have been with his displays."

Ross will continue in the squad for the trip to Berwick Rangers this weekend, which will be his first as a signed Shire player.

Latest 100 Club Winner

During the half-time break at the Shire-Arbroath match on the 30th January 2016, the latest 100 Club draw was made.Stuart Blackwood was the lucky winner, winning £100.If you want to join the 100 Club, and in doing so help raise vital funds for the club - as well as being entered into the monthly draws to win prizes, please apply in the commercial section of the website.Thank You


Next Fixture

VS

Queens Park v East Stirlingshire
Ladbrokes League 2
Hampden Park, Glasgow
13/02/16, 3:00pm

League Table

TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
Elgin City23124741311040
East Fife24115840301038
Queens Park22105729181135
Annan Athletic2110473731634
Arbroath229483229331
Clyde209383024630
Stirling Albion218582525029
Montrose2384113342-928
Berwick Rangers2164112540-1522
EAST STIRLINGSHIRE2162132951-2220