Three points, but Toon must do better

Peterhead sit joint-top of Division Three beating ‘home’ side Clyde at Alloa Athletic’s Recreation Park thanks to goals from former Alloa man Robbie Winters and Rory McAllister.

But the defeat was of Clyde’s own making, as they had the better of the play throughout the game, a fact acknowledged by Blue Toon boss Jim McInally after the game.

There was only one change from the side that had come so close to taking all three points from Rangers a week earlier, Ross Smith replacing Graeme Sharp at right wing-back with the long serving Sharp preparing for his wedding on Sunday.

After a scrappy start it was Jim Duffy’s side, featuring former Blue Toon man Bryan Gilfillan, who threatened first.

John Sweeney pounced to fire goalward from the edge of the area, but Ryan Strachan deflected the effort away for a corner.

The Blue Toon had barely threatened Jamie Barclay’s goal but with the likes of Winters and McAllister around, are always a threat.

And it was the instincts of Winters which lead to the opener.

Clyde defenders Iain Gray and David Marsh got in each other’s way as they dealt with Paul Jarvie’s clearance, the latter heading the ball only as far as Winters, who lofted over the goalkeeper from fully 30 yards.

Marsh came close to making amends almost instantly, his header from a Stevie Masterton corner headed off the line by Dean Cowie.

And they had another chance when Stuart McColm crossed from the left for John Neill, the midfielder slicing his shot wide at the back post.

Out of nothing, though, it was 2-0. There looked no danger as Winters slipped the ball to Redman almost on the bye-line, but the midfielder was clipped by John Kane and a spot-kick was awarded.

McAllister, as you would expect, stepped up to coolly send the ball low to Barclay’s left as the keeper dived off to the right.

The cushion that gave Peterhead seemed to spur them on, and McAllister could have doubled his tally when he brought the ball down in the area, but lashed his shot side of the target.

Five minutes from the break a dangerous bounce from Gilfillan’s snap-shot looked awkward for Jarvie, but the goalkeeper covered it well to maintain his side’s two-goal lead.

Captain Callum Macdonald was just inches from giving his side a third goal, his looping header coming off the post before being scrambled to safety.

There was an incredible let-off for Peterhead when Neill sent Stefan McCluskey, though on Jarvie’s goal, the ex-Clyde keeper beating away his first attempt before Strachan snuffed out the second.

McCluskey attempted to catch Jarvie out again with 15 minutes left, his snapshot forcing the keeper into a diving save low to his left.

As time ticked down, still it was the home side who were looking for that elusive goal to get themselves back in the game, but Neill twice failed to hit the second, the latter chance seeing him head wide of a gaping goal.

McInally admitted afterwards that the points were more important than the performance, but his side must do better if they are to challenge come the tail end of the season.

PETERHEAD: Jarvie, Smith, Noble, Ross, Macdonald, Cowie (Deasley 85), Strachan, Redman, McAllister (Maguire 74), Winters (Bavidge 62), McLaughlin. Subs not used: McBain, McCallum (gk).

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Attendance: 401