Macron Scottish Junior Cup Third Round



By Stewart McConnell

AFTER seeing off heavily favoured Beith in the second round Buffs were expected to coast through at home to League One minnows Bellshill.

They failed to add to their tally in the second half after missing countless chances.

However the vintage first half display suggests they could in the running to match the class of the 1999 team by lifting the coveted trophy

Indeed they began well and in four minutes Ryan Nisbet made a good run and shot just over the bar from 18 yards. Two minutes later a Chris Taylor effort was deflected over the bar by a Bellshill defender.

Then in 10 minutes Carlo Monti shot just over the bar from 16yatds.

Monti then had the goalie to beat from 12 yards but screwed his effort wide.

Buffs made the breakthrough in 20 minutes when Bryan Boylan set up Nisbet to knock the ball home from eight yards.

A swerving shot from 20 yards by Michael Wardrope was fumbled but recovered by visiting goalie Alan Colquhoun in 27 minutes.

However on the half hour Buffs doubled their tally when Monti ran on to a long through ball and shot home from eight yards,

Buffs once again came close in 34 minutes when a Boylan header from eight yards was easily saved by Colqihoun.

The hosts were unlucky in 47 minutes when Wardrope sent a 20-yard shot whistling narrowly wide. Then Monti shot over the bar with the goalie to beat from 12 yards two minutes later.

Wardrope sent a rasping 28-yard shot crashing off the crossbar in 51 minutes.

Another chance was squandered by Buffs In 58 minutes when a Nisbet effort from 12 yards hit the side netting.

Buffs were unlucky in 66 minutes when Wardrope shot just high and wide from 12 yards.

The ball broke to Boylan 16 yards three minutes later, but the front man shot just over the bar.

Bellshill had a rare chance in 75 minutes when Connor Brannigan shot high and wide from 25 yards.

The Abbey Park side should have scored again in 77 minutes when Boylan headed a Marc McKenzie cross just over the bar from six yards.

Home goalie Adam Strain was tested for the first time in 84 minutes when he punched a Connor Brennan header over the bar from six yards,

Bellshill came close again in 87 minutes when an Alessandro Saravese shot from 12 yards was brilliantly saved by Strain.

KILWINNING RANGERS: Strain; McLevy, McCloskey, Pettigrew, McGuinness, Monti, Lewis, Boylan, Wardrope, Syme. Subs: Fleming, Curragh, McKenzie, Maitland.