Saturday February 13, 2016
Ladbrokes League One
McCormack 53, 90
Goals from Cadden and Lister weren't enough to save ten-man Airdrie as they slipped up at icy Ochilview.
For the third time this season Stenhousemuir took all three points courtesy of a late winner as David Cox's first-half red card took it's toll on the Diamonds.
After the snow had been cleared from the pitch and the lines made visible the match got underway even though the elements looked as if they might affect the completion of the match.
Airdrie were controlling the opening stages with Jim Lister almost putting David Cox in on goal in the first minute but Stenhousemuir keeper Colin McCabe was out early to gather the ball.
Dylan Mackin blasted a loose ball high over the crossbar a minute later after Kieran MacDonald’s cross from the left led to a number of ineffective attempts to clear the danger.
There was no surprise that it was the visitors who took the lead in five minutes.
A succession of on-target efforts by the Diamonds saw the well-marshalled home defence block the shots. The ball came back to Nicky Cadden who was just outside the box and he wasted little time in firing the ball through the ruck of players past McCabe for the opening goal.
Two minutes later, one of Alan Lithgow’s long throws was headed out to the edge of the box and Cadden blasted the ball high over the target.
Out of the blue, with their first shot on goal the home side levelled the match on 18 minutes.
Ciaran Summers was given time to control the ball 25 yards out and although his shot looked to be covered by Neil Parry a deflection took the ball into the net at the keeper’s right post.
Goals change games, and on this occasion it gave the home side the encouragement needed to force their way into the match.
Jim Lister drilled a low shot in on goal in 20 minutes that was taken cleanly by McCabe.
Stephen Stirling was working some neat lay-off and return passes with Jason Scotland who was leading the line well.
Scotland passed to Stirling in 27 minutes and he forced Parry to make a decent save from his 20-yard shot.
The Airdrie keeper had to be just as alert when he came off his line to smother the ball on the half hour as Stirling chased Scotland’s pass in behind the Airdrie defence.
Stirling was wasteful once more in 35 minutes after a headed defensive clearance took the ball to the edge of box but he blasted the ball well wide of goal.
With seven minutes of the first half remaining, the far side linesman flagged to the referee who then returned to the play to show David Cox a red card.
Airdrie saw out the remainder of the half out and the sides went in at the break level. After the interval Liam Watt replaced Dylan Mackin.
Airdrie were back in front a minute after the restart. Cadden worked some space on the right and his early front post cross was controlled well by Lister who took a step to the right of his marker then sent the ball past McCabe into the net.
Jon Robertson went close on a couple of occasions as the home side sought an early response.
A free kick in 53 minutes led to the equaliser. 20 yards out and right in front of goal, Scotland powered a shot through the wall that Parry saved well and as the ball bounced around the penalty box, Jamie McCormack sent it high into the Airdrie net.
Parry made some decent saves, in 56 minutes from Colin McMenamin’s drilled 20 yard shot then two minutes later low to his left from Mark Gilhaney.
Gilhaney was on target in 66 minutes but once more Parry collected the shot.
There was some last ditch block tackling as the Diamonds continued to hold their opponents while Stenhousemuir were enjoying lots of possession.
Just when it appeared Airdrie would leave with a point they conceded a corner which Glihaney delivered to the front post and McCormack headed home a minute into stoppage time.
The sides meet again on the 9th of April - Airdrie's penultimate home league match - when the Diamonds will have their last opportunity to address the imbalance this season in meetings with the Warriors.
John O'Brien at Ochilview Park.
Photographs © Robert Dalzell. Click to view full-size