Mo’ had their chances at Elgin

ELGIN City clinched their place in the Second Division play-offs with victory over Montrose at Borough Briggs on Saturday.

It was no more than Ross Jack’s side deserved in a low key performance by the visitors.

After his great game as a substitute against East Stirlingshire Garry Wood for Scott Johnston was the only change to the Montrose line-up.

A third minute pass up the right channel by Winter put Garry Wood clear inside the box but his cross was blocked.

In the fifth minute the visitors had another opportunity when the ball fell to Winter 30 yards out but his effort went wide of the right post.

Captain Cameron became the first booking of the match in the eighth minute for a late tackle on McPhee. McPhee took the free kick himself but Miller’s header was deflected over for a corner.

Two Montrose passing moves found Boyle both times and he outpaced his marker to win two fruitless corner kicks.

Sandy Wood saved the Gable Endies in the 24th minute when he turned a shot from Gunn around the post after the striker had been put clear by Cameron. From McPhee’s corner Wood punched clear and then when McPhee launched over another cross he was on hand to pull off a point-blank range save to tip over Miller’s header.

In the 28th minute Montrose had a great chance when Crawford played through Boyle but with only the ‘keeper to beat the normally deadly youngster fired straight at him.

After creating all the chances the visitors fell behind in the 35th minute when Elgin top goalscorer GUNN cut inside Campbell and curled an unstoppable effort into the net.

Half-time: Elgin 1, Montrose 0.

Elgin started the second half on the attack and a low effort from Alex Cooper went past the post.

In the 51st minute Brian Cameron was lucky to remain on the park for a retaliation kick on Garry Wood. Referee Dallas showed Cameron yellow that should have been red, then booked Crawford. Two minutes later Stephen McNally was booked after going over the top in a meaty midfield challenge after he lost the ball.

In the 55th minute a quick passing move split open the away defence and left McPHEE the easy task to blast home past the exposed Sandy Wood.

Ray Farningham made his first change seven minutes later when Scott Johnston came on in midfield to replace Young.

Minutes later Elgin City made their first change with Crooks coming on to replace Miller. Soon after, Montrose’s McPhee replaced Masson, and Elgin’s Beveridge came on for Leslie.

Montrose reduced the leeway in 75 minutes. With a player injured in the box playing everyone on side, McPhee hooked over a high cross to the far post and BOYLE was on hand to volley into the corner of the net from six yards.

Seconds later Winter picked up a booking for a foul on Cameron in the middle of the park.

In the 82nd minute Boyle raced clear of Durnan down the right flank and was tripped up. Durnan was rightly booked before ‘keeper Clark did well to push Cameron’s inswinger over.

A minute later with McPhee about to take a corner kick Montrose sent on Smart for Cameron and went three at the back and pushed Smart up front alongside Johnston, Wood and Boyle in a bold effort to salvage a point.

In the 85th minute Elgin City won a corner kick after Wood pulled off a great stop to tip a McPhee shot around the post. The corner was cleared out only as far as Gunn who shot well over.

Montrose had a good chance to equalise in the 88th minute. McNally played in a ball which found Smart unmarked and through on goal . Unfortunately for Montrose his lob cleared the crossbar bar by inches.

In stoppage time Boyle won another corner kick which was taken by Winter, but Elgin cleared the ball to claim their place in the play-off finals for Division Two for the first time since joining the Scottish Football League.

Montrose: S. Wood, McNally, Cameron (Smart), Lunan, Campbell, Crawford, Masson (McPhee), Winter, Boyle, G. Wood and Young (Johnston) Substitute: Andrews.