a DEFEAT to Queen’s Park on Saturday meant the end to Montrose’s play-off hopes this season, writes Sarah McLean.
Despite staying in the top four for much of the year, stumbles at the final hurdles saw Stuart Garden’s side slump to sixth.
Speaking after the defeat Garden said: “I am very disappointed, especially with Berwick losing to Annan.
“We wanted to give ourselves a chance of the play-offs on the last day but two bad goals cost us dearly.
“We have made progress and we will be looking to do the same next season.
“Berwick losing gave us a chance, but we failed to take it.”
But the boss is pleased with how his team have come together after his first season in charge. After languishing around the bottom of the Third Division the past few seasons, the Gable Endies have had a great run in 2012/13. Garden said: “The boys have been putting in good performances this season and they’re gelling well as a team now.
“The team is definitely coming together now and we’ve got 11 or 12 signed up already for next season and we have a good base to build on for next season.”
He continued: “I think for me a high point this season has been drawing against Rangers at Ibrox and then we drew against them at home as well. But the best performance has probably been the 1-0 win against Peterhead just after the New Year. That was absolutely top notch.”
There have been some blips along the road, however, and while Montrose have had an excellent run in the league, their cup hopes were all cut drastically short. The manager continued: “The Edinburgh City game was a big disappointment but I don’t think that was any coincidence that it happened the week after we played Rangers. I think I’m right in saying that up until Christmas there was no team in the league that had managed to win the week after playing Rangers.
“The Peterhead game where we lost 6-0 was really disappointing and we should have done better.”
Meanwhile, Montrose held their annual end of season awards night on Saturday following the Queen’s Park game.
The full list of winners for the 2012/13 season was as follows: directors’ player of the year and ever present - Garry Wood, fans’ favourite and the Stan Thornton Memorial Trophy - Alan Campbell, junior fans’ favourite - Jamie Winter, players’ player of the year - Terry Masson, young player of the year - Ricky McIntosh, top goalscorer - Martin Boyle, Ronnie Cross Memorial Trophy - Dean Easton.
The final game of the season will be against Annan Athletic this Saturday at Galabank with an earlier kick-off time of 12.45 p.m. to accommodate televised coverage of Rangers v Berwick Rangers.
Garden added: “We now have to finish on a high and come back in a positive way for next season.”