A goal in each half was enough to give East Stirlingshire a deserved victory but Dalbeattie Star’s lack of discipline let them down big time.
Seven yellow cards (six to Star) and a red card made this match sound like some sort of bloodbath, but it was nothing of the sort.
Star travelled north licking the wounds of their last two defeats. They had the better of the first period though neither side could create any real openings as both defences were well on top.
However, just after the half hour the home side opened the scoring with a goal of real quality. A long diagonal ball to Andy Rodgers was a tactic the home side employed throughout the game to good effect and that was what brought about the opener.
Rodgers took a great first touch to cut inside Curtiss Wilson and fired in a superb shot from outside the corner of the penalty area that flew past Vinnie Parker and went in off the inside of his right hand post.
Star were still very much in the match but with just a minute or so of the half remaining the task became a lot more difficult. With Star about to take a free kick the standside assistant drew the referee’s attention and after a brief chat, Lewis Todd was summoned and shown a red card. It later transpired it was for an offensive gesture to the home support and the Star had to play more than half the match a man short.
On the hour Vinnie Parker produced a superb double save to deny Ross Allum and Rodgers and seconds later Allum headed wide at full stretch with only Parker to beat.
You always felt if Star could keep the deficit at one then some anxiety might creep into the home sides play but in the 66th minute they scored a second.
A Star goal kick was knocked back over the visiting defence and Wilson was stretching to head the ball back to his keeper but he couldn’t get enough on it and Allum nipped to lob the ball over Parker and into the net.
Seconds later Curtiss made up for his error with a goal saving clearance at the back post when it seemed sure the Shire would score a third.
Star now has a week to try and get some of the walking wounded patched up and ready for action as Civil Service Strollers travel to Islecroft next Saturday. Vale of Leithen’s victory over Whitehill maintains our five point advantage over the Rosewell club and with six of our last eight league matches at home, we could really do with beginning to pick up some points in the coming weeks.