Inchture 4 Merpro 3
Merpro resumed Midlands Division One League action with a match against an Inchture side unbeaten in the league.
Inchture opened the scoring when Merpro were caught ballwatching with a back post effort coming back off the bar, and the rebound sent home from six yards in 10 minutes.
Merpro found their feet and only stout defending prevented an equaliser when triple rebound efforts from Allan, Murdoch and Mcdougall were cleared off the line.
Inchture went further ahead when their striker escaped his marker in the box and fired in a low shot from 12 yards after 27 minutes.
Merpro lost possession in midfield and a quick break sliced through the visiting defence, but Lownie pulled off a great save.
Half-time: Inchture 2, Merpro 0.
Merpro came out looking more comfortable and took the match to their opponents.
They came back into the match when Houston picked up a headed corner-kick clearance on the edge of the box and fired the ball back for Scott GRAHAM. He turned to beat his marker and drilled his effort into the net from 12 yards.
Merpro were now the dominant force and McDougall had a 25-yard shot saved by the ‘keeper.
The same player came even closer when Allan floated in a free kick with McDougall’s diving header from 12 yards agonisingly coming back off the post.
Merpro’s pressure paid dividends when Euan DUFF shrugged off three defenders to run in on goal and fire a low drive for the equaliser in 66 minutes.
Merpro’s second half performance was now rampant and another moment of fine play sent them into the lead. Allan collected the ball in midfield and slipped a perfect through ball for Euan DUFF to time his breaking run from midfield and calmly round the ‘keeper to score 72 minutes.
Inchture came straight back when a routine cross from a quick short corner came into the box. Unfortunately, Lownie dropped the ball and an attacker had an easy tap-in from three yards to bring the home side on level terms in the 73rd minute.
Both sides continued searching for the winner but as a close-fought draw looked likely the home side snatched a dramatic winner. Their left back collected a clearance on the edge of the box and fired in a thunderous high drive in-off the underside of the bar to score the winning goal in injury time.
Merpro’s second half attacking performance and come back was deserving of reward but there were many encouraging signs for rebuilding the side.
Team: Lownie, Murdoch, Houston, Bruce, Whyte, S. Robertson (Wood), McDougall (Hector), Allan, E. Duff, Graham, J. Robertson (N. Duff).
Next match: Auchterarder Primrose (a), Scottish Cup, second round.