Rossvale leave Huntershill on a high with win over Neilston

Rossvale are close to promotion after their win over Neilston (pic by HT Photography/@dibsy_)
Rossvale are close to promotion after their win over Neilston (pic by HT Photography/@dibsy_)

Rossvale said farewell to Huntershill in style with a win which keeps them on track for promotion to the top flight of junior football.

An excellent second half display secured the victory which leaves Gordon Moffat’s side knowing wins in their final two games will guarantee a place in the Premiership.

It was Neilston who were first on the attack in the second minute when they beat the offside trap just inside the Vale half but a great recovery by Matt Niven thwarted them.

Three minutes later it was Jamie Donnelly with a goalline save that kept the Vale level after Neilston broke down the right.

With the game going from end to end Vale made the breakthrough. Donnelly launched a long ball which found Stephen McGladrigan midway inside the Neilston half and he brought the ball down, turned his man and ran into the box and gave Sean Patrick in the Neilston goal no chance to put the Vale one up.

But after going ahead Vale seemed to be affected by nerves for the rest of the first half.

The only other decent move came midway through the half when Niven found Liam McGonigle with an excellent pass and he slipped the ball to McGladrigan whose curling shot looked as if if was going in at the postage stamp only to hit the corner of the crossbar.

Straight from the kick off in second half McGonigle took a corner out on the right which found Bradley at the back post but his effort just slipped past the bottom corner.

At the other end Robbie Halliday who made a great run down right and cut in past several Vale players in the box but was finally stopped by Niven.

Andy Johnstone had to leave the park on the hour mark looking as if he was still suffering the effects of the brutal tackle on him from midweek and was replaced by Gary Giffin.

Immediately the ball was played into McGladrigan who then laid it onto Giffin at the edge of the box who controlled his first touch right high into the net again leaving Patrick no chance.

Now the ‘Vale were in complete control, nerves gone and some great football being played.

Three minutes later another long ball found McGladrigan in the box and although his effort was stopped by the keeper, McGonigle followed up to head over the keeper and into the back of the net from about 16 yards out and was swamped by his team-mates as they realised that promotion is still on track.

With three minutes left - after a second half of complete domination - Vale won a free kick 20 yards out on the right. Chris Duff took a short free-kick from Kirk Forbes, drifted into the box, beating a couple of Neilston defenders on the way, and curled an unstoppable shot high into the corner of the net with Patrick struggling to get over to cover it.

As the game entered the last minute Peter Bradley thought he had made it five when he burst forward and fired in a thunderous shot which forced an excellent save from Patrick who dived across goals to his right and pushing the effort away.

Match report: Andy Sandilands