Girvan 2 Forth 2 (4-5 Pens)
Forth overcame Girvan 5-4 on penalties yesterday at Hamilton Park, after the West of Scotland tie finished 2-2 after 90 minutes. The Wanderers scorers were Murphy and McGroarty.
Forth made four changes to the team which lost to Rossvale – Hutchison,Gibb,Chris McQuade and Crawford all coming in.
The Wanderers started well and Chris McQuade fired narrowly over before Chris Gordon won the ball in midfield, beat a defender and shot over the bar. Girvan were also contributing to an entertaining game and Forth keeper Hutchison had to look lively to block from the home number 10. A McQuade corner was then deflected by a Girvan defender onto the top of his own bar as Forth pressed for the opener. However, it was the home side who broke the deadlock. The lively Girvan number 10 timed his run down the right perfectly as an excellent through ball split the Forth defence and he gave Hutchison no chance with a clinical finish.
A McQuade corner was dummied by Gordon setting up a shot for Jamie McKenzie but the Forth manager fired over from a decent position. Barry Canning was then put through by McQuade but slipped before he was able to pull the trigger. At the other end, Hutchison again did well to save from the home number 10. Forth got the goal their play deserved on 33 minutes when Gordon Murphy bulletted a header past the home keeper from 12 yards. An entertaining half ended with both teams looking to attack but there was no further scoring.
The Wanderers created the first chance of the second half when a good run and cross by Gibb was just missed by Chris McGroarty with the goal at his mercy. Girvan then regained the lead on 53 minutes from the penalty spot, when McKenzie was adjudged to have handled in the box and the home player made no mistake. As Forth pushed further up the field in search of an equaliser, Hutchison was called into action on a couple of occasions as the home side broke quickly but the Forth keeper was more than equal to the task. On 73 minutes, the Wanderers drew level when the ball broke to Chris McGroarty 20 yards out and his shot seemed to take a slight deflection before nestling in the back of the net. That completed the scoring although Girvan had a couple of chances near the death, but overall the draw was probably a fair reflection on the game.
So on to penalties! The first 6 penalties were scored before Hutchison saved Girvan’s fourth and with the next two being scored Chris McQuade had the chance to win it for Forth but he screwed it wide. Fortunately, Girvan missed in sudden death leaving James Hughes to send the Wanderers into the next round.
Overall, decent weather, a friendly club and an entertaining match to boot.
More photos can be found here.
Forth team : Hutchison,McKenzie,Howson,Grant,Gibb(Traynor),Canning,C.McQuade,McGroarty,