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Monday, 11 March 2013 11:14

Debutant Steele fires Ladeside to victory

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Alba Thistle BC
KCFC Ladeside Juniors
Seedhill Pavilion, Paisley
It was a first meeting of the season between these two teams and with Alba having an indifferent run of form recently and KCFC enjoying an unbeaten League run stretching back to November, it was one which, on paper, favoured the team from Kilbirnie, North Ayrshire.

KCFC were forced into some line-up changes prior to the game which allowed recent signings John Buckley and Ryan Steele to make their team debuts alongside the previous weeks three debutants; Cammy King, James Humphrey and Callum Craig.

Once again KCFC were quick off the mark in taking the game to Thistle. The Kilbirnie side pushed forward in the opening minutes forcing three corners in quick succession. After just 8 minutes debutant striker Steele had broken the deadlock. Some terrific play on the right-wing by Callum Quinn released Steele on the edge of the Thistle area and he bore down one-on-one with the Alba 'keeper and slotted the ball underneath him to open his account for the team.

Alba took a while to get into their stride but once they did they began to prove a danger, especially on the counter-attack. Some extraordinary saves by new 'keeper King kept KCFC not just in the game but also in the lead. However, on 22 minutes the home team were awarded an indirect free-kick about 5 yards outside the KCFC penalty box on the right. The resultant kick sailed high over the assembled KCFC wall and went just beyond the outstretched King into the back of the net without making contact with any player. The goal was controversially given despite the referee having signalled that the kick was indirect!

On 25 minutes, Kilbirnie regained the lead thanks to a terrific 30-yard solo run and shot from Jay Hood out on the left. It remained 2-1 for the North Ayrshire side until the break but they did squander a couple of decent chances to put the game beyond doubt before the interval arrived.
Half Time: Alba Thistle BC 1-2 KCFC Ladeside Juniors
Just over a minute into the second period and Thistle won a corner kick on the Kilbirnie left. From the set-piece debutant John Buckley intercepted the ball deep in his own area and surged forward aided by left-back Callum Caig on the overlap. John released Caigy on the left edge of the Alba penalty box and the defender’s searing cross-field ball fell nicely for the in-rushing Jay Hood to blast home his second and KCFC's third for a spectacular counter-attacking goal.

Alba stubbornly refused to lie down. They continued to try and unlock the Kilbirnie defence but were thwarted at almost every turn by some excellent defending from McCafferty, Humphrey, Dempsey and Caig at the back. On the 50th minute mark centre-back Shaun Dempsey went down following a clash in the middle of the park and had to be replaced. Substitute Nairn Mackie was introduced to the fray and his first touch saw him guide home a Kyle Walker corner-kick to make it 4-1 for the visitors. Barely 5 minutes later Captain for the day Marc Gillies had made it 5-1 for KCFC with yet another of his stunning long-range free-kicks; this time from 30 yards out on the left wing. It was a truly fantastic strike.

KCFC were now on easy-street, but Thistle had no intention of giving anything up. Craig Fyfe, who'd replaced Cammy King in goal at the break, had to pull off some excellent saves of his own. With just 5 minutes remaining Alba Thistle got their second goal. KCFC had been on the attack but were caught on the counter as the home side broke out of their area and steamed forward in numbers, determined to have something more to show for their efforts. Indecision and lacklustre challenging left Fyfe exposed in the Kilbirnie goal and he was powerless to prevent the powerful Alba shot driving high into his net.

The scoring ended there and KCFC saw out the game winning 5-2. It was a fabulous match in which both teams gave of their all, but the Ayrshire side were just too strong in the end. For such an outstanding debut and a terrific first goal for his new team the Man Of The Match award went to Ryan Steele. We would also like to take the opportunity to thank our main sponsors who make it possible to keep our team up and running; J&D Pierce, Community Windfarms and WGM Engineering.
Full Time: Alba Thistle BC 2-5 KCFC Ladeside Juniors
Last modified on Thursday, 08 August 2013 01:01
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