Robertson Park, Viewpark
ThorniewoodUnited v Larkhall Thistle
Thistle stepped up their level of opposition agai
n as they continued their build up to the new season but went down to a heavy defeat against higher league Thorniewood in what turned out to be a bad tempered affair.
The Jags took the lead in the eighth minute when Ross McGeachie headed in for Graham Gracie, he cut inside and drilled his shot low into the net and could have gone two up when Mark Canning fired over from a Ross McGeachie lay off after good work from Mark McKeever. Thorniewood drew level from a free kick after 25 minutes and were starting to take control of the midfield but a minute later Gracie scored again to put Thistle back in front, the striker reacting well to be first to the ball after appearing to lose it inside the box.
Thorniewood got their second equaliser from the spot ten minutes from half time after Hugh Kelly had mistimed his challenge and that seemed to be where the roof fell in for the Jags as all their good work unfolded. First a quick break down the right wing ended in a cross into the six yard box and an easy finish for the Thorniewood attacker who found himself in too much space, then an almost copycat effort, this time on the left, again saw the Jags defence caught out with a close range tap-in.
Half Time: Thorniewood 4 Larkhall Thistle 2
Thistle started the second half with Lee Moss in goals, replacing Davie McEwan who had been struggling with a niggling injury and eight minutes into the half the home team increased their lead when Andy Brown sliced a clearance into the path of his opponent who scored with a low drive. Kelly and JP Grant were then taken off, Jordan Marshall and Scott Nicoll coming on in their place.
Thorniewood went 6-2 up after 61 minutes when Moss did well to stop a goalbound header but only succeeded in palming it onto the bar and the ball dropped perfectly for a Thorniewood player to head into the open goal.
Thistle then made more changes with McKeever and McLachlan being replaced by Brian Jack and Mark Russell, and Ryan Innes coming on for Niall Reynolds.
The game then turned a bit nasty after Marshall got a straight red card for a challenge and players on both sides involved in the afters. Thistle had a couple of half chances to pull a goal back through Gracie then McGeachie but the home team completed the scoring with a ball straight through the middle of the defence that went undefended, leaving an easy lob for the home striker.
All in all a harsh reality check for the Jags with no great perfomances and a general lack of confidence after going behind, Gracie getting back amongst the goals probably being the only real positive from the game.
Full Time: Thorniewood 7 Larkhall Thistle 2
McEwan; Reynolds, McMinn, Brown, Kelly; McLachlan, Canning, Grant, McKeever; Gracie, McGeachie
Subs: Russell, Jack, Innes, Marshall, Moss
Sent off: Marshall