Forth 1 Rossvale 0
Forth won their 3rd league game in a row, with a hard fought victory over Rossvale at KingshillPark. A second half goal from Robbie Brown separated the sides but it was a far closer encounter than their meeting four weeks ago, when Forth secured a comfortable 3-0 victory.
As is their want, Forth began the game strongly and could have been ahead within a minute. Chris Lennon embarked on a surging run before passing to Tony Traynor whose pinpoint cross picked out John Watson in space, but the midfielder could only head over. Undeterred, the Wanderers came even closer in the third minute when Traynor met a Chris McGroarty corner but his effort from a couple of yards was blocked by ‘Vale keeper Scott Sommerville and Traynor shot the rebound wide.
Forth were then given the perfect opportunity to open the scoring in the fourth minute when Andrew Scanlon was adjudged to have handled a Dean McLean cross, but player/manager McGroarty pulled his spot kick wide of the right hand post. A let off for Rossvale who had been caught cold by the Wanderers whirlwind start but as the game developed they began to be seen as an attacking force and home keeper JC Hutchison had to touch over a long range free kick from Jamie McKinney on 11 minutes. Stephen Lowther found space to meet the resultant corner but directed his header wide. The visitors were enjoying a spell of pressure without really troubling the Forth defence and as the half progressed Forth re-asserted their superiority, McGroarty firing wide after being set up by Andrew Gilchrist before Jordan Smith forced Sommerville to turn the ball away for a corner after meeting a long Marc Howson free kick with his head. The final chance of the half fell to Forth’s Robbie Brown but he fired wide, leaving the teams level at the break.
Forth began the second half on the front foot, with Lennon prominent on the right wing and they forced an early corner as they sought to gain the advantage. Lennon then came close on 48 minutes with a sublime piece of skill. The winger controlled a Jordan Smith pass on his chest before swivelling and firing a dipping half volley just over, a tremendous effort worthy of a goal. At the other end Scanlon came close for Rossvale, firing a shot narrowly wide from 22 yards but Forth were now dominating the game and Sommerville held a McGroarty shot on 54 minutes before crosses from two searing Lennon runs were turned away for corners.
Adam Forsyth then spurned a decent chance for Rossvale on 63 minutes when he failed to angle his close range effort and the ball rolled harmlessly past the post. This was to prove costly for the visitors when Forth took the lead on 71 minutes. A Chris McGroarty corner was met by the head of Jordan Smith and although keeper Sommerville blocked the initial effort, Robbie Brown was on hand to scramble the rebound into the net. Tony Traynor then embarked on a mazy run before feeding substitute Bryan Felvus but the Forth striker could only shoot straight at Sommerville.
There were no further chances of note as the game drew to a conclusion although Forth began to get deeper and deeper as they sought to protect their slender advantage and there were a nervy 5 minutes of injury time for the home supporters to endure before the celebrations could begin.
Next week, Forth travel to league leaders Blantyre Vics in what promises to be a cracker.
‘Mon the Forth.
Forth team : Hutchison,Howson,McLean,Smith,Canning,Watson(Felvus),Lennon(McQuade),