Arbroath Vics 1, Montrose Roselea 1
ARBROATH Vics were again at home on Saturday when they entertained second top, Montrose Roselea in a league fixture.
Manager Jake Ferrier made changes to the side that lost to Dundee North End the previous week with Garry Warren and Craig Sturrock both returning, replacing Gary MacFarlane and Ewan Graham.
There was also a change in goal with Chris Cargill making his first appearance of the season, deputising for Lee Hutcheson. A new signing, Liam Campbell from English non-league side Watton United, was included on the bench, while Colin Lawson was allowed to go on loan to Forfar Albion.
Montrose Roselea drafted in former ASC stalwart Ian Greig as a trialist as they attempted to seek their ninth straight league win and keep the pressure on leaders Dundee Violet.
On a bitterly cold day, Vics were the first to create a chance when Craig Watson flicked a Craig Stephen cross on for Mark Fotheringham and his header was held by Ross McLeod with one hand just under the bar.
Craig Anderson picked up the first booking of the afternoon in the 13th minute when he hauled down Terry Gray. From the free kick, Chris Simpson got on the end of McLeish’s cross, but his header, although on target, bounced through to McLeod who gathered comfortably.
Sturrock found his name entered into the referee’s notebook when he sent Robert Urquhart crashing to the ground as he tried to reach a Stewart Fletcher pass in the 16th minute.
Gray was then caught in possession in midfield by Anderson who linked up with Collier allowing him to release Urquhart. Although the Roselea player didn’t make the most of the chance, his shot almost found Fletcher lurking at the far post as it ran behind.
Vics replied in the 25th minute when a great ball from Stephen sent Watson away on the right, but as he cut into the box and fired goalwards, McLeod made a fine save, diving to block his effort at the near post.
In the 31st minute a mistake by Kevin Laing gifted Roselea the lead. Under no pressure inside his own box, the defender played the ball square, straight into the path of STEWART FLETCHER who took a touch before curling a shot into the corner of the net beyond the reach of Cargill.
A couple of minutes later, Vics task became more difficult when Sturrock made a run into the Roselea half, but having lost control of the ball, took out Anderson and was shown a second yellow card and ordered off.
In the 40th minute, it was 10 against 10 when Anderson was also shown a second yellow card for a pull on the touchline. It seemed a fairly innocuous tug, but it was spotted by the referee who had no hesitation in asking him to leave the field after brandishing the red card.
Half-time: Arbroath Vics 0, Montrose Roselea 1.
Roselea were the first to show after the interval and a quick one-two between Collier and Urquhart saw the winger get to the by-line, but although Collier made some contact with the cross, it was cleared away by Stephen on the six-yard line.
At the other end, Stephen made ground down the right before whipping over a dangerous cross, which Watson got on the end of, but his downward header bounced up and into the arms of McLeod on the line.
In the 51st minute, Greig won the ball from McLeish on the halfway line and advanced up the left before crossing into the box, looking for Urquhart. Simpson got to the ball first and his headed clearance almost found the back of his own net, but Cargill just got the slightest of touches to flick it onto the bar and over. From the corner, Collier got his head to Urquhart’s cross, but he saw his effort loop over.
Collier was shown a yellow card in the 55th minute when he pulled back McLeish.
Soon after a Gray long throw saw Watson almost capitalise on a mishit Fotheringham shot, but his curling effort cleared the bar.
Gray then tried his luck with a long range drive along the ground, but it didn’t carry sufficient power to trouble McLeod.
McLeod then kept Roselea in front when Simpson slipped the ball into the box for Watson, but the ‘keeper made a good save with his body as he came charging of his line.
Sean Mustard was then yellow carded for a foul on Fotheringham before Roselea were reduced to nine men in the 74th minute. Collier was adjudged to have impeded Gray and the referee brandished a second yellow card and ordered him off. Before play resumed, Fletcher was replaced by Lee Hood.
With a one-man advantage, the impetus swung back in Vics favour and Simpson wasn’t far away with a header following a McLeish free kick, his glancing effort just dropping wide.
Vics then made a substitution replacing Stephen with Ryan Owbridge, making his return since picking up an injury against Tayport.
Watson was once more denied by McLeod when the ‘keeper again got down smartly saving low at his near post as he turned and fired off a shot from just inside the box.
Kennedy was next to fall foul of the referee, picking up a yellow card for an infringement on the far side of the pitch.
Roselea were fortunate not to be down to eight men in the 85th minute when Paul Whyte lashed out with his foot at Warren, which resulted in a bit of pushing and shoving between the sides. Once the dust had settled, the Roselea player was relieved to see the referee only pull a yellow card out of his pocket.
Vics continued to push for an equaliser and in the 86th minute got their reward. Yet another free kick conceded allowed the ball to be hoisted into a packed goalmouth and CRAIG WATSON got on the end of the cross to send a looping header beyond the reach of McLeod and inside the post.
Over the piece, Vics were worthy of at least a point, which got them back on track after two disappointing defeats in their previous two matches, whilst halting Roselea’s winning sequence of eight consecutive games. However with Dundee Violet continuing their 100 per cent record in the league at the halfway stage, it is they who will have been more than pleased to see the teams share the points.
Arbroath Vics: Cargill, McLeish, Laing, Stephen (Owbridge 77), Florence, Sturrock, Gray, Fotheringham, Watson, Simpson, Warren. Unused substitutes: McKenzie, MacFarlane, Campbell and Duncan, gk.
Montrose Roselea: McLeod, Mustard, Taylor, Kennedy, Reoch, Whyte, Urquhart, Anderson, Collier, Fletcher (Hood 75), Greig. Unused substitutes: Craig, Rodger, Riach, Aitken, Brand and Taylor.
Referee: Mr. M. Roncone, Monifieth.
Vics are home again!
With most teams involved in the East of Scotland Cup this Saturday, Vics find themselves at home for the fourth consecutive week when Brechin Vics are the visitors in a league fixture. Kick-off is at 1.45 p.m.
Winners this week were: £70 – No 90, Ian Muir; £30 – No. 121, Chris Cargill; £15 – No. 142, Ross McGregor; £10 – No. 6, Danny Brown; £5 – No. 152 Jock McGurk.
McBookie.com East North League
P W D L F A Pts
Dundee Violet 10 10 0 0 41 7 30
Montrose Roselea 11 8 2 1 33 7 26
Dundee North End 11 8 1 2 28 13 25
Arbroath Vics 11 5 3 3 22 18 18
Kirriemuir Thistle 11 5 1 5 20 16 16
East Craigie 9 3 3 3 20 19 12
Brechin Vics 10 4 0 6 18 36 12
Lochee Harp 10 3 1 6 21 34 10
Blairgowrie 9 1 3 5 16 22 6
Forfar Albion 11 0 4 7 13 29 4
Coupar Angus 9 0 0 9 13 44 0