Newton Stewart 3, Nithsdale Wanderers 0
John McNaught at Blairmount Park
Newton Stewart’s good run of form continued on Saturday when they defeated Nithsdale Wanderers 3-0.
However, the scoreline could have been much higher had it not been for some good goal-keeping and some poor finishing.
The home side attacked right from the start and in the first minute an effort from striker Calum Dunn was cleared off the line after he had left the keeper stranded on the ground.
Four minutes later, defender Martyn Henry started a move which he finished when he found space to feed the ball up the right wing to John Morrison, who returned the cross to Henry only to find his header narrowly miss. On the 10-minute mark, Robert Paisley attempted to score from a tight angle but found the side netting and, a minute later, Johnny Fisher brought out the best from the Nithsdale keeper.
With 15 minutes played, Paisley had another effort again cleared off the line. Three minutes after that a shot from the same player looked net-bound but was deflected for a corner before Morrison was denied by keeper Dalzell, who pulled off another good save.
The visitors were holding out with Newton completely dominating the play and in the 35th minute a header from Paisley was again cleared with a last-ditch tackle before a great solo run from Morrison ended with the ball in the back of the Nithsdale net to open the scoring – much to the relief of the home side.
Three minutes later the visitors had their first effort on goal when David McCron rifled the ball towards keeper Harry Fidler, but he held it without much trouble. As half-time approached, Dunn again rounded the Nithsdale keeper but his shot on goal missed.
Newton continued to dominate at the start of the second half but it took until nearly the hour mark for them to increase their lead when a good cross from Paisley on the right found Dunn six yards out at the back post to fire the ball into the net past a helpless keeper.
Two minutes later, Nithsdale’s substitute Rodney Patterson was red-carded and in the 68th minute keeper Dalzell did well to save a Stevie Beggs free kick. With 70 minutes played, Greig McCluskey was the saviour as once again a net-bound ball was cleared from the line with Dunn looking for his second and his side’s third.
However, 13 minutes from time the third goal did come when Dunn played a ball through to Beggs who hammered it home with his left foot from 15 yards. And three minutes later Dean Fyfe almost scored another but his good effort hit the bar.
This was a very good performance from the home side who, although under strength, were never in any danger of losing. Player/manager Davy Hyslop and skipper Graeme Blain formed a good partnership in the middle of a defence that was seldom troubled. Up front, Dunn, Paisley and Morrison were lively and, with a bit of luck, they could have added to their three goals.