Saturday, February 12, 2011

You know you're not having a good season when the six pointers come early. At least we've waited till February and it turned out to be worth the wait.

With East Fife rooted bottom of the Scottish Second Division, today's game at Ochilview against the team one point and one place above us was massive.

No understatement. No hyperbole. This was a must win game for East Fife for the confidence factor as much as the points one.

And the lads came up trumps, with East Fife fairly easily dispatching Stenhousemuir 2-0, with a fine all round performance, another clean sheet and amazingly our first away league win of the season.

East Fife were deserving of the win, against the team that have become our whipping boys at Bayview in recent times, but it was scrappy at times. Some would argue that the turning point came in the 19th minute, when Stevie Hislop had to go off injured and Lloyd Young came on. Many have been crying out for Young to have a regular starting spot once again and his performance today will have added to that number.

Young gave the Fife the lead on the stroke of half time, firing home after a nice build up. Lloyd then set up Bobby Linn three minutes into the second half, for the Boabster to double the advantage as he rounded the keeper and put it away from a tight angle.

Stenny were reduced to ten men on 63 minutes when Stevie Murray was sent packing for kicking out at Jim Hamilton. After that East Fife made it home to the three points, despite being under some pressure from the weakened Warriors.

Young had a good game, but praise also has to go to Dylan McGowan and Michael Brown for some solid defending and goalkeeping. The defence on the whole looked a lot tighter and inspired more confidence. Another clean sheet will help too. In the middle Robert Sloan and Div Muir are forming a great partnership. We just need a prolific one up front and some optimism may start to creep back into the black and gold faithful.

The win lifted East Fife up two places to eighth, with another huge game coming up on Tuesday at home to 9th placed Dumbarton. A win there would open up a three point gap on the relegation playoff spot with three games in hand and a five point gap on bottom spot with two games in hand over Stenny.

With East Fife having at least two games in hand on all of those in the bottom six, this would set us up for at least a more comfortable run in to the season, albeit a meaningless one.

Mon the Fife.

FINAL SCORE: Stenhousemuir 0 - 2 East Fife

EAST FIFE: Brown, Durie, Ovenstone, McGowan, McCulloch, Linn, Sloan, Muir, Johnstone (Park 73), Hislop (Young 19), Hamilton. [Subs Not Used: Lyness, Smart, Fagan]

ATT: 590

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