Dumbarton Academy FP.... 3
Doune Castle.... 2

DOUNE CASTLE did enough to deserve a share of the points but the loss of goals either side of half time cost them dearly.

The Castle made the best of starts, taking the lead in under 90 seconds.

From kick off, Dumbarton surged into the Doune area. Paul Statter retrieved the situation with a perfectly timed sliding challenge. Statter then drilled a pinpoint 60-yard pass through the middle to Alan Inglis.

As Inglis powered into the area, the Accies keeper and a defender brought Inglis tumbling to the floor for a clear penalty.

Niall McClure confidently drilled the ball home, sending keeper McGillivray the wrong way to make it 1-0.

On four minutes, Alan Inglis earned a free kick 25 yards out. Inglis curled the ball round the wall but saw it slip a foot wide of the right hand post.

Three minutes later, McGillivray punched clear a long throw form Andy Innes. The ball broke to the edge of the area. Graham McClymont struck a low shot that flew a yard wide.

Dumbarton were quick on the counter-attack. They should have equalised after 10 minutes. A dash won the right ended with a well-weighted cross towards the back post. An Accies player met the ball on the volley but skewed his shot yards over.

After 13 minutes, Alan Inglis was unlucky when he nodded another Andy Innes throw wide of the crowded box with McGillivray rooted to his line.

Accies stormed back. On 17 minutes, Colin Dormer was unable to hold a testing ball curled low into the area from the right. Niall McClure was on hand to launch the ball clear.

Seconds later, Dumbarton broke clear on the left. They cut the ball back but shot high over the bar from 10 yards. In their next attack, Dumbarton came even closer, this time rattling the crossbar before Kenny Feaks thumped clear.

After 22 minutes, Colin Dormer directed a massive clearance through the centre of the Accies defence. Colin Dougherty cleverly took the ball on the turn. His dipping half volley from 22 yards tested McGillivray as it skidded up off the grass.

Dumbarton countered again and another right-left attack ended with another reasonable opportunity squandered.

Doune regained a better share of the ball. On 25 minutes, Paul Statter flicked a clearance forward into Colin Dougherty’s path. Dougherty hit the ball first time but saw his drive flash a yard wide.

Seconds later, under pressure from a crowded box, McGillivray did well to catch an Andy Innes throw.

Dumbarton were gifted their best opportunity to equalise after 30 minutes. An Accies forward hammered a shot from the edge of the area against Alan More from point blank range. The ball struck More’s arm. To Doune’s dismay, the referee awarded a penalty.

Justice was done, however, when Dumbarton hit the post with the spot kick.

Doune countered with a good move that ended with Alan Inglis drilling an Andy Innes pass first time. His shot lacked power and the keeper gathered low to his left.

Paul Statter caused problems with a curling corner from the right. No Castle forward could take advantage and the ball slipped wide.

Andy Innes won possession in midfield and created an opening with a deft nutmeg. The keeper did well to collect his shot from 23 yards.

A sweeping Castle move saw Kenny Feaks break forward before releasing Alan Inglis with an angled pass. Inglis shrugged off the centre back and muscled his way into the box. He smacked a shot on the run from 16-yards into the side net.

With a pulsating first half deep in added time, Doune conceded a second penalty. David Innes was lured into the challenge just inside the area.

This time, Dumbarton took full advantage, drilling low into the corner past Colin Dormer to make it 1-1. Doune’s frustration was intensified when the referee immediately blew for halftime when the ball hit the back of the net.

The Castle forged a decent opening after 48 minutes.

Kenny Feaks started the move with another string run from deep. Andy Innes moved it on to Paul Statter. His cut back found Niall McClure charging forward in support. McClure hit a clean half volley first time but saw his rising shot slip inches over.

Dumbarton edged into a 2-1 lead after 49 minutes.

Doune twice failed to clear down their left flank. Accies took full advantage, driving high into the net from 16 yards after a forward hit the byeline and cut the ball back.

Dumbarton were buoyant. After 59 minutes, the Doune goal led a charmed existence as Dumbarton played pinball with the Castle goal frame. Three times in quick succession, Dumbarton struck the bar and the post as they looked to press home their dominance of possession.

Accies keeper McGillivray made a terrific save after 61 minutes.

Alan More found Alan Inglis with a precise free kick from the left. Inglis towered high to power a header towards the postage stamp corner. Somehow, McGillivray clawed the ball out from under the bar and turned it over.

6 minutes later, another Alan More free kick caused problems for the Accies backline who were happy to see it elude Alan Inglis and slip narrowly past.

Doune enjoyed a spell of pressure and the More-Inglis combination created another chance after 69 minutes. However, Alan Inglis could only head wide from 8 yards after leaping above his marker to get on the end of More’s cross.

Andy Innes launched successive throws into the box but the Dumbarton defence withstood the aerial barrage to preserve their lead.

With Doune looking worth an equaliser, they contributed to their own downfall after 78 minutes. Doune needlessly rushed to take a throw-in on the right, deep into Accies territory. A slack pass saw Accies counter at speed with the Doune defence committed forward.

A quick pass through the retreating Doune backline presented a forward with a clear shot on goal. He confidently slipped the ball under Colin Dormer from 12 yards to make it 3-1.

Doune were sure they had pulled a goal back after 86 minutes.

Andy Innes again found Alan Inglis with a long throw to the near post. Inglis headed the ball cleanly but saw McGillivray claw the ball out and over the bar. Doune were adamant the ball had crossed the line.

With the clock showing 90 minutes, Doune made it 3-2.

Colin Dougherty broke into the area and was pulled down.

Niall McClure changed his side from his first spot kick and drilled a low shot well into the corner of the net.

From looking comfortable with ten minutes remaining, the Accies were now unsettled. Incredibly, 4 minutes into added time, Doune felt they had scored an unlikely equaliser. Once again, the Andy Innes-Alan Inglis combination came to the fore.

Inglis rose above the defenders and headed the ball towards the left corner of the net. The ball looked well over as McGillivray pulled the ball back and flicked it out. An enraged Doune were left frustrated as the referee failed to award the goal.

The referee finished the match, leaving Doune frustrated at their own frailties and inability to capitalise further on the chances they did create.

Doune Castle: Dormer, David Innes, Chris Dougherty Feaks (Coubrough), McClymont, Andy Innes, McClure, Statter, Colin Dougherty, Inglis, More Substitutes: Morrison, Gallagher