Toon take share of spoils in League One opener

Peterhead's Rory McAllister and Stirling's Chris Smith challenge
Peterhead's Rory McAllister and Stirling's Chris Smith challenge

A late goal by ace marksman Rory McAllister earned Peterhead a share of the spoils in a game that always looked like being a close one between the two teams promoted from Division Two last season.

The Blue Toon had the honour of raising the Championship flag to the delight of fans before kick-off then proceeded to dominate, certainly in the chance created stakes, in the first half.

Peterhead were without the suspended Andy Rodgers, so David Cox started up front and twice sent shots narrowly over the crossbar.

Stirling Keeper Greg Paterson was to show signs of things to come early on with a couple of nervous moments.

First he allowed a ball to bounce when he should havecaught it causing mayhem.

Then a poor back pass forced him into a hurried clearance.

After 21 minutes Jamie Redman tested Paterson with a low shot which was well saved.

McAllister then went on a run down the left and Reece Donaldson just failed to connect when the cross came in.

McAllister also kept Paterson on his toes with a shot from a tight angle that the Albion stopper just managed to get a finger to at the expense of a corner.

The visitors looked a decent side last season and they were equally competent in their build-up but rarely threatened the Peterhead goal.

Their best, and indeed only chance of the first period, took 33 minutes.

Gordon Smith turnedv sharply before seeing his well struck shot palmed clear by Graeme Smith.

The second half was a different matter though and from the restart it was the Binos who looked the more lethal.

One-time Peterhead target Steven Dorris twice called Smith into action so the opener came as little surprise after 55 minutes.

Lewis Coult slipped the ball neatly inside the penalty and Smith made up for his earlier chance with a well taken goal, sending the ball low into the bottom corner.

The Blue Toon huffed and puffed without looking like having the guile to get themselves back into the game until just five minutes from the end.

It was route one stuff, Ryan Strachan sending a probing but hopeful ball forward from inside his own half.

Paterson needlessly raced out towards the edge of his penalty area with that guy McAllister taking full advantage to open his account.

His touch on the volley was perfectly weighted and aimed to guide the ball home and give Peterhead the leveller.

This was not a great performance by the home side, as Jim McInally said he made clear to his players in the dressing room at the end.

However, it put a point on the board nonetheless ahead of the trip to Airdrieonians on Saturday.

PETERHEAD: Smith,

Donaldson, Noble, Smith

(McCann 70), Ross, Gilfillan, Cox (Brown 70), Redman, McAllister, Stevenson,

Strachan . Unused – Jarvie, Richardson, Tait