Martin equaliser earns Rangers a point in dour Shielfield draw


By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 24 February, 2016, 08:14
Berwick Rangers Fooball Club Crest


Berwick and Queens Park had to settle for a point apiece in what was at times a dour encounter at Shielfield on Tuesday.

Ryan McGeever gave Queen’s the lead with a header from a corner after 27 minutes, with Brian Martin heading the Rangers’ equaliser just five minutes before half-time, also from a set oiece.

With East Stirling also taking a point from their 0-0 draw against Arbroath, it meant there was no change at the bottom of the league with two points separating the sides in the basement stakes.

Berwick included Dylan Stevenson and Finn Graham, the two pkayers who had helped give them a spark in the 2-1 defeat at Clyde on Saturday, whilst Kevin Walker returned in goal after missing the trip to Broadwood through suspension.

Stevenson had the first shot for Berwick after six minutes which was deflected for a corner, but in general the opening exchanges were devoid of any meaningful goalmouth action at either end.

In the first 20 minutes neither keeper had to make a direct save with both defences snuffing out the opposition attack.

The first moment of anxiety in the home penalty area came when an inswinging free kick from Sean Burns on the visitors’ right caught everyone by surprise.

Just moments later, on 27 minutes, Queen’s Park, with their first direct effort on goal, opened the scoring when Ryan McGeever found the net with a close range header from a Burns’ corner.

Berwick finally managed to haul themselves back on level terms after 40 minutes when a Graham corner was flicked on in the box and Martin headed the ball home from eight yards to level it up at the break.

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The second half began at a quicker pace with Gavin Mitchell and Stevie Notman firing wide at either end in the opening minutes.

Callum Crane made a strong run for Berwick down the left but his shot from distance was always going high.

But as the game progressed chances became more of a premium, although Darren Lavery pulled a shot wide in injury time.

After the match Berwick assistant manager Arthur Bell said: “Of course we are disappointed not to win, as three points would have been very welcome in our situation.

“It was quite a scrappy affair with neither goalkeeper having a busy night, and we have to take the positives from the game, which includes a point.

“We will take it and move on to Saturday’s match (at home against Montrose), where hopefully we can get back to winning ways again.”

Berwick: Walker, McNeil, Fairbairn, McGregor, Crane, Notman, Stevenson (Cunningham 71), Graham, Martin (McKenna 81), Henderson, Lavery.

Queens Park: Muir, Mitchell, Gibson, Berry (Brown 46), McGeever, Hooper, McLeish (Duggan 64), McKennon, Carter, Galt (Bradley 85), Burns.

Referee: Steven Reid

Attendance: 326.