Red Star too hot for young Saints GG outfit

Red Star defender Coll MacCalum keeps a close eye on on young Saints GG midfielder James Beaton.

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Oban Saints GG 0
Lochgilphead Red Star 3

Lochgilphead Red Star travelled to take on Oban Saints GG team in a friendly match played at Oban High School 3G last Saturday.

Eager to test themselves against considerably more experienced opposition the match got off to a bad start for the young Saints side.

Defending a fifth minute corner kick a thumping Angus Lewis shot smacked Alan Buchanan in the face before hitting the big striker on the arm.

Referee Martin Rae correctly pointed to the penalty spot from where Red Star’s dead ball specialist Andrew Weir made no mistake to give the visitors the lead.

Kyle Cooper and Ben Forbes in action. Photo by Derek Black.

Things went downhill for Saints in general and Buchanan in particular when he came off worse in a collision with Red Star defender Ben Forbes, which ended his interest in the proceedings.

Saints keeper Murdo MacKenzie was in inspirational form and produced the first of a string of excellent saves in the 25th minute to deny Stuart MacLean.

Red Star striker Ciaran McPhie spun away from Daniel Sloss in the 32nd minute but couldn’t beat Murdo MacKenzie, who pushed the ball across the face of goal.

The Saints shot stopper waited for the net to bulge from the waiting Stuart MacLean but was delighted to see Alex Craik get back with a perfectly executed sliding challenge to take the ball off the toes of the Red Star striker.

The visitors struck again in the 42nd minute after veteran defender Craik had turned an Andy Weir right wing cross behind for a corner kick.

Weir’s delivery from the right was headed away but only as far as Red Star youngster Zander MacKenzie, who lashed an unstoppable shot across a well-beaten Murdo MacKenzie and into the top corner of the Saints net.

The young Saints side passed up a terrific opportunity to half the deficit going into the interval when Keir MacLean, with the goal at his mercy, blazed the ball over the bar from six yards after an excellent run and cutback on the right wing from Robert Johnstone.

After a quiet first half Ally Lewis was seeing a lot more of the ball in the second 45 and was forced into action to parry a 77th minute Daniel MacCuish shot before gathering safely at the second attempt.

Any faint hopes the home side may have entertained of a comeback were cruelly extinguished in the 78th minute when Ciaran McPhie pounced on a slack pass out from the back and raced through on goal to calmly slot the ball past Murdo MacKenzie for the third and final Red Star goal.

There was one final test for Red Star keeper Ally Lewis in the 85th minute with the youngster taking great delight in keeping his clean sheet intact, pulling off a fine save to deny Kyle Cooper after good work on the Saints right from Lewis Buchanan and Daniel MacCuish.

Referee Martin Rae, who handled proceedings well, brought the action to an end sending the visitors back down the A816 by far the happier of the two sides.