Young Spiders dominate

SCOTTISH DIV III'PETERHEAD V QUEENS PARK'(DUNCAN BROWN)''PETERHEAD'S SCOTT McLAUGHLIN  GETS ABOVE THE QUEENS PARK ATTCKERS TO CLEAR.
SCOTTISH DIV III'PETERHEAD V QUEENS PARK'(DUNCAN BROWN)''PETERHEAD'S SCOTT McLAUGHLIN GETS ABOVE THE QUEENS PARK ATTCKERS TO CLEAR.

A goal in each half was enough to ease a youthful Queens Park side to a comfortable victory and justify why they are the best of the mini league that has formed behind runaway leaders Rangers.

With a handful of first team regulars unavailable to manager Gardiner Spiers, he turned to youth and a side packed with teenagers did him proud and for large spells ran rings around an uninspiring Peterhead side.

On the plus side, the Blue Toon are still in a playoff place but having played two games more than fifth spot Elgin City, it is debatable whether they can hang on to it with many more displays like the last two witnessed at Balmoor.

Their defensive record, only bettered by Rangers, has kept them in the race for promotion but no victories at Balmoor in 2013 and only one goal scored in the five games since the turn of the year is hardly the stuff that promotion is made of.

Once again, lack of clear cut chances and the clinical finish needed to round off the few that were created, cost Peterhead dear.

The match started brightly for the home side, on loan Andy Rodgers bursting clear into the penalty area before being denied by the giant figure of Spiders Keeper Neil Parry with the striker’s second attempt going into the side netting.

Thereafter Queens Park’s young guns ripped through the Peterhead midfield and defence at will and it was no surprise when they took a 12th minute lead. The impressive Jamie Longworth dribbled his way to left side of the six yard box and his firmly stuck cut back was deflected into the net by Steven Noble for an unfortunate own goal.

On the half hour Longworth clipped a delightful shot towards the top corner and it took some agility from Graeme Smith to touch the ball wide for a corner.

As half time approached , Alan Urquhart likewise had a shot well saved at the expensive of a corner by Smith whilst at the other end a 34th minute shot, woefully wide by one of Peterhead’s better players on the day, David Cox, was the best they could muster.

Any chance of a comeback was dealt a blow five minutes after the restart when a cross from the left by Sean Burns was touched home by Lawrence Shankland and it looked a long way back for the Blue Toon.

They responded with a Cox run into the left side of the penalty area but his low cross was not met cleanly by Rory McAllister who slid in six yards out and the brave Parry grabbed the ball amongst a crowd of players from both sides.

Bryan Gilfillan came off the bench and sent a couple of headers towards goal, the first from a Cox corner then from a cross by fellow substitute Graeme Sharp but neither carried any menace.

Ten minutes from the end, a wayward McAllister shot was somehow met by the head of Cox as the ball flew well wide but it went high and over the crossbar.

In recent weeks Peterhead’s best performances seem to be away from home and the hope is that will be the case again when they travel to basement side Clyde on Saturday. A return to the performances shown at Elgin and East Stirling are desperately needed to get them back on track.

Peterhead: G Smith, McCann (Gilfillan 62), Noble, Strachan, R Smith, Cowie, Cox, Redman (McGlinchey 84), McAllister, Rodgers (Sharp 67), McLaughlin Unused: Jarvie, Tully

Attendance: 479