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Shire 3 Montrose 1

Shire moved off the bottom of the league as they beat Montrose 3-1, their third home win in a row. They opened the scoring in the 11th minute through Jordan Cairnie’s header, his first goal for the club.
It took barely 15 seconds of the second half for Shire to double their lead through Andy Kay’s strike. Minutes later, it was 3-0 as Kris Faulds’ break set up David McKenna.
Montrose pulled a goal back midway through the second half through Gary Fraser’s powerful strike, but the Gable Endies never looked like getting back into the game.
The result continues a great run of form that sees Shire picking up 10 points out of 15, and deservedly move up to 8th. Next up, is another home game, this time against Clyde.
Shire started positively, and they took the lead with their first great chance, coming from a free-kick on the left-wing. Kris Faulds’ curled a dangerous ball which the Montrose’s keeper Ross Salmon came and missed, giving Jordan Cairnie a simple header to opening the scoring.
Montrose could have equalised soon after as Ryan Ferguson crossed to Gary Fraser, but his shot was blocked by Chris Townsley.
But it was Shire who were on top. Faulds cut off the wing and broke to the edge of the box, but he couldn’t find the target. Then from a free-kick in a dangerous area, Max Wright teed up Faulds, but his effort flew agonisingly wide of the right post.
Then Montrose came close to an equaliser. Jesse Curran’s deep cross picked out Graham Webster at the far post, but his header was kept out by Darren Dolan’s reflex save.
Late on in the first half, it was Shire who were denied by a wonder save. Nathan Shepherd’s free-kick was cleared to Andy Kay whose blasted shot was superbly tipped over by Salmon.
It took just 15 seconds of the second half for Shire to double their lead. Faulds’ cross found Wright who was challenged by the keeper, the ball dropped to Kay who scored into the empty net.
Montrose had a half-chance to pull a goal back. Webster’s cross found Ross Campbell whose shot was blocked by Townsley, and then Ferguson blasted the loose ball over.
Then Shire increased their lead even further. Shire broke from a Montrose attack through Faulds down the left, he played a stunning through-ball to David McKenna: his first touch took him past the keeper, his second saw him roll the ball into the empty net.
Montrose then pulled a goal back when Campbell headed the ball down to Fraser who blasted the ball past Dolan.
Shire kept threatening though. Faulds’ superb through-ball sent Wright into the box, but Matty Allan got enough contract of his shot to simplify Salmon’s save.
The visitor’s never looked like reducing Shire’s lead, with their best threat coming in the 75th minute when Greg Pascazio shot wide from Adrian Mallagaharry’s corner.
And late on, Shire could have scored another as Ally Roy broke from a Montrose corner, but his shot was well saved by Salmon.

Teams Shire: Dolan, Kinnaird, Townsley, Cairnie, Gilmour, Kay (Greene 69), McCabe, Faulds, Shepherd (Court 90 3), McKenna, Wright (Roy 88).
Subs not Used: Wallace, Jon Tully, Fairbanks (GK), Murray. Goals: Cairnie 11, Kay 46, McKenna 58
Booked: Kay, Greene

Montrose: Salmon, Pascazio, Howlett-Mundle, Allan, Johnston, Ferguson (Milne 80), Curran (Kenneth 54), Malin (Mallagaray 61), Webster, Fraser, Campbell.
Subs Not Used: Reoch, Reid, Harwood, Butter (GK)
Goal: Fraser 66
Booked: Howlett-Mundle, Webster, Campbell

Referee: Colin Steven
Attendance: 238

East Fife 5 Shire 3

An action packed second half with five goals and three red cards saw Shire eventually lose to East Fife 5-3. East Fife had started the better and it was no surprise when Kyle Wilkie scored. However, the Fifers never took full advantage of this supremacy, and goals from Ross Gilmour and David McKenna saw Shire leading at half-time.

But then came a mad ten-minutes period. Jamie Insall equalised for the home side, only to be shown the red card seconds later from a late reckless challenge on Reece Donaldson. Nathan Austin then converted a one-on-one to put the Fifers back in front, before Donaldson blasted Shire’s equaliser from close range. East Fife restored their lead when Shire failed to clear a corner, allowing Pat Slattery a tap-in.

Shire’s chances on finding an equaliser was impaired by two defenders being shown second yellows: first Donaldson for leading with his elbow in an aerial challenge, and then Aaron Lynas for a late frustrated swipe.

And then deep into second-half stoppage time, East Fife made sure of the points when Austin converted another one-on-one.

The defeat sees Shire remain bottom of the table, and will be looking to make it three home wins in a row next Saturday against Montrose.

Craig Tully named the same team that had beaten Queen’s Park.

Shire were given an early warning as East Fife had the ball in the net after 15 seconds when Nathan Austin headed down to Jamie Insall who fired the ball into the net, but the assistant on the far side signalled he was offside.

They were given a second warning when Gary Naysmith’s free-kick picked out the unmarked Scott Mercer, but his header just went wide of the left post.

There would not be a third warning as East Fife took the lead. After switching the play to the right-wing, Craig Murray was given the time to pick out the unmarked Kyle Wilkie whose header found the bottom corner.

Shire, though, had a couple of chances to get an immediate equaliser. An Aaron Lynas corner fell to Neil McCabe whose blocked shot fell to David McKenna who in turn had his shot deflected for a corner. Nathan Shepherd nearly scored directly, but Naysmith headed clear off the line.

But it was the home side who were still on top. From the byline, Mercer cut the ball back to Murray who saw his shot blocked by Chris Townsley. And then Austin teed up Wilkie whose shot smashed off the post.

Shepherd’s may run set up a long-range shooting opportunity, but Fife’s keeper Ryan Goodfellow made a super save. Then, minutes later, Reece Donaldson saw his close-range shot blocked behind.

Then Shire equalised as Lynas’ deep cross picked out Gilmour, whose header nestled in the far corner.

It could have been even better minutes later when Jonny Court sent Shepherd through on goal, but his attempted dink was saved by Goodfellow.

But in the 40th minute, Shire did take the lead. A corner was cleared back to the taker Shepherd, whose second ball pick out Donaldson whose header was saved by Goodfellow, but David McKenna was in a perfect position to follow-up the rebound.

The first action of the second half saw Lynas booked for a foul on Insall on the right-wing. From that position, Naysmith whipped a ball into Insall, whose shot was magnificently diverted behind by Donaldson. That reprieve though was short, as it was from that corner East Fife equalised. The corner found Austin whose header was parried by Dolan, but Insall pounced to fire the ball into the back of the net.

However, thirty seconds later, Insall’s game was over after he was shown the red card after his late reckless challenge took out Donaldson.

East Fife could have taken the lead soon after as Austin crossed to Wilkie, but from a close distance, he volleyed over.

Shire had a couple of chances to retake the lead soon though as Shepherd spun his defender to break into the box, but was denied by Goodfellow’s flying save. And from the corner, at the near post, Max Wright glanced his header agonisingly wide of the far post.

Donaldson then received a yellow card for a follow on Austin near the corner spot

And then East Fife made it 3-2. A long ball from Naysmith released Austin, who calmly placed the ball beyond Dolan’s reach.

Two minutes later, Shire equalised. Shepherd played the corner to the edge of the box to Lynas and his first-time shot was parried by Goodfellow. The ball fell to McKenna, but his shot was incredibly blocked on the line by Jonathan Page, but he could do nothing to stop Donaldson’s blasted shot.

Unfortunately, it would only take two minutes for East Fife to retake the lead. They nearly did it through Wilkie’s volley, but that was denied by Dolan’s superb reactive save. From the corner, they scored as Shire failed to clear and the ball provided Pat Slattery with a simple tap-in.

The number of players was evened up as Donaldson was shown a second yellow after leading with an elbow whilst trying to win a header against Austin. This is the second time that Donaldson has been sent off by Nicky Walsh with a second yellow, after the away tie to Queen’s Park at Hampden Park.

Shire had a couple of half-chances. McKenna’s header was saved low down by Goodfellow, and then a free-kick was worked to Townsley in the box, but his header was saved from close-range.

But then Shire’s chances got even harder when Lynas was given a second yellow card after a frustrated late swipe at Wilkie.

Shire could not create a great chance after that, and it was East Fife who would have the final say. Austin went through on goal once more and rolled the ball past Dolan and into the bottom left corner.


East Fife: Goodfellow, Kerr (Campbell 66), Page, Naysmith, Murray, Leyden (Mullen 45), Slattery (O’Kane 76), Wilkie, Mercer, Austin, Insall.

Subs not Used: MacGregor, MacDonald, McGovern (GK)

Goals: Wilkie 11; Insall 54; Austin 61, 90; Slattery 65.

Booked: Murray 90 3.

Sent Off: Insall 55

Shire: Dolan, Kinnaird, Townsley, Cairnie, Donaldson, Gilmour (Roy 66(, Lynas, McCabe (Faulds 82), Shepherd, Court (Wright 52), McKenna.

Subs not Used: Greene, Jon Tully, Wallace, Fairbanks (GK).

Goals: Gilmour 33, McKenna 40, Donaldson 63.

Booked: Gilmour 48, Lyna 53, Donaldson 58.

Sent Off: Donaldson 78, Lynas 86.

Referee: Nicky Walsh

Attendance: 543

East Fife Preview

Shire coach Craig Tully is unlikely to make much in the way of personnel changes for this weekend’s trip to play East Fife at Bayview, as the team looks to extend an unbeaten league run to four matches. Two wins and a draw over the last three games have inched Shire back towards the other nine teams after a six match losing streak threatened to open up a gap, and another win would be good enough, depending on other results, to lift them from the foot of the table. Even with 12 games of the season gone there is still very little to divide the teams, a fact well-illustrated by the fact that although Shire remain bottom they only have five fewer points that this weekend’s opponents who currently sit third. The coach is playing his selection hand close to his chest but is adamant that everyone in the 18 player pool chosen will have their part to play, irrespective of whether they start or are on the bench. “They are working for each other as a squad which is good, and the guys on the bench need to support those starting and everyone needs to realise that it’s about 18 players and not just eleven,” he said. “Against Queen’s Park it was two substitutes who combined to score our winning goal, which proves that everyone who gets stripped can contribute.” Shire have already beaten East Fife this season, in the opening match of the 2015/16 Ladbrokes League 2 campaign on 8th August when a late Lloyd Kinnaird strike eased them to a narrow 1-0 victory at Ochilview. Since then, while Shire fell to six defeats in their next seven games East Fife put together a run of five victories in the same period which propelled them to the top of the table. However, from that point on the Bayview team has struggled to find the back of the net and have gone six matches, including a two game Scottish Cup-tie against Stirling Albion, without victory. They are not a team who concede many, though, and they have the most parsimonious defence in League 2, having lost just ten goals in twelve matches so far. East Fife also have one of the league’s top strikers in Nathan Austin who has managed to hit the back of the net seven times in all competitions in 2015/16 and is clearly a man to be watched. Shire will wear our all-sky blue third strip to Bayview while East Fife will be in their traditional black and goal. The match referee is Nick Walsh and admission is £13 adults, £10 senior citizens, £5 children while a family admission is £16 for an adult and one child and £19 for an adult with two children. Kick-off at Bayview is 3:00pm.

Next Fixture


East Stirlingshire v Clyde
Ladbrokes League 2
Ochilview Park, Larbert
05/12/15, 3:00pm

League Table

Annan Athletic148332417727
Elgin City147252720723
Queens Park147162416822
East Fife146352417721
Stirling Albion145361416-218
Berwick Rangers144371530-1515