October 29, 2022
cinch League 1
Lewis Jamieson 21, 38, 51
Craig Watson 45
Lewis Jamieson was the hat-trick hero as Airdrie got back to winning ways in spectacular fashion with a 4-0 win over Montrose.
Craig Watson grabbed the other goal for the Diamonds, but it was Jamieson who took the plaudits - and the match ball - on a fantastic afternoon for Rhys McCabe’s men.
The Diamonds boss brought Cammy Ballantyne, Euan Deveney and Jamieson back into his starting XI with Aaron Taylor-Sinclair, Dean McMaster and the injured Gabby McGill dropping out.
Academy starlets Kyan Gunn and Corrie Fellows retained their places among the substitutes, and were joined by team-mates Alasdair Spalding and Dom Kavanagh.
After a display of support for the Show Racism the Red Card campaign, the action got underway with Airdrie looking sharp from the off.
Player-manager McCabe went close with a second-minute header as he met Charlie Telfer’s corner kick, and it took a timely interception from Seán Dillon to cut out Calum Gallagher’s cross after the striker was alert to Kerr Waddell’s slip.
Telfer fired over on nine minutes following a nice passing move around the visitors’ box, and keeper Ross Sinclair saved well from Callum Smith four minutes later after a wonderful backheel flick from Gallagher.
Striker Jamieson had looked lively from the get-go, and he opened the scoring with an outstanding finish on 21 minutes, a superb touch on McCabe’s long pass taking his marker out of play before the St Mirren loanee lashed an unstoppable strike into the top corner.
Jamieson almost added a fine assist three minutes later, his reverse pass teeing Gallagher up perfectly, but the strikers shot whistled past the post with Sinclair beaten.
Smith saw a 33rd-minute strike deflected wide after a quick one-two with Deveney, but five minutes later Jamieson had doubled his tally and the Diamonds’ lead.
Dean Lyness’s kick was nodded on by Justin Devenny to Gallagher, who took the ball to the bye-line and slid the perfect pass across to Jamieson, who rifled home at the back post.
As half-time approached, Airdrie continued to move the ball well and a 45th-minute corner led to their third. Devenny laid the dead ball to Telfer, who crossed for Gallagher to hook the ball across the face of goal leaving Watson the simplest of headers for his second goal of the season.
Stewart Petrie made three changes at the break, but it proved to be in vain as the Diamonds went further ahead just six minutes into the second half.
McCabe’s flighted ball saw Sinclair rushing off his line, but the keeper seemed to hesitate as Jamieson dashed in, and the striker glanced a header past the stranded keeper to complete his hat-trick.
McCabe almost made it five on 57 minutes as his well-struck free-kick looked to be heading for the top corner, but Sinclair produced a fantastic flying save to claw the ball to safety.
A rare chance for the visitors came two minutes later, but veteran striker Rory McAllister could only nod wide as he stretched to meet a cross from the right.
A quiet spell followed as Montrose made further changes and the Diamonds were happy to recycle possession, but Devenny was unfortunate to slip as he connected with a 78th-minute effort and Sinclair gratefully gathered.
The on-loan St Johnstone keeper was involved again on 81 minutes, saving a long-range Smith effort with his legs before keeping out the striker’s near post effort a minute later.
Montrose sub Craig Johnston saw a strike deflected over with a minute remaining, and Jamieson shot straight at Sinclair after a final-minute counter from the Diamonds.
The final whistle called time on a superb performance, and Jamieson’s exploits mean the Diamonds have now scored 14 goals against the Gable Endies in their last three visits to the Excelsior.
Airdrie now face the bottom two, Clyde and Peterhead, as they look to continue their turnaround in form.
Stuart Mathie at Excelsior Stadium.
Photos © John Steven. Click to view full-size.