Stephen Aitken delighted by rising Dumbarton

Torrential rain and strong winds at the Indodrill Stadium made playing conditions difficult but Dumbarton adapted better than Alloa and ended a six-game winless run. Picture: SNS
Torrential rain and strong winds at the Indodrill Stadium made playing conditions difficult but Dumbarton adapted better than Alloa and ended a six-game winless run. Picture: SNS
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Dumbarton manager Stephen Aitken was delighted that his team came out on top in the first of a league and cup double-header with Alloa thanks to a 2-0 win at the Indodrill Stadium

The success lifted Aitken’s side up two positions into seventh place and, as well as ending a six-game winless run, the three points created a nine-point gap over their bottom-placed hosts.

The Dumbarton boss, however, is not convinced that Mark Docherty meant the goal that provided the breakthrough against Danny Lennon’s men – although he was delighted he scored.

Both sides had created chances in the first half. Dumbarton striker Steven Craig was denied a goal when his powerful drive was blocked by James ­Doyle, and the home side’s Colin­ ­Hamilton saw a header deflected away from the Dumbarton goal by Darren Barr.

Just before the break a deflection took a Hamilton shot goalward this time, but Mark Brown was able to tip the ball away. Play moved to the other end and Andy McNeil failed to gather a Willie Gibson corner, but Kevin Cawley was crowded out with the goal gaping.

The hosts were doing plenty of probing and pushing in the second half, yet it was Dumbarton who broke the deadlock on 72 minutes.

To rub salt into Alloa wounds, it was their former favourite Docherty who scored – albeit in fortuitous circumstances.

With his left foot, he sent over an inswinging corner from the right and – with the assistance of the wind – his cross ended up flashing past home goalkeeper Andy McNeil and landing in the net.

Alloa looked to hit back and Brown did well to spread himself big enough to keep out a Michael Duffy effort, before Dumbarton clinched the win on 86 minutes.

Eamonn Brophy created it with a cross that allowed Grant Gallagher to dive and head home the second from close range. Aitken said: “Anyone who knows Mark will not be ­surprised to learn that he is saying that he meant it. I am not so sure but I am glad he did score. We have been playing well recently but not picking up three points, so it is good to get a win.

“When you consider that Livingston and St Mirren were not playing because of the weather and we picked up the three points, it has been a good day.”

The sides meet again tomorrow night in the Scottish Cup and Aitken said: “This game will have to be forgotten about and we start again. The cup tie is very different as it is at a different venue and hopefully in better weather conditions.”

It was a seventh straight Championship defeat for Alloa and manager Danny Lennon said: “We are going through a difficult time at the moment and getting punished for every small mistake we make. We are suffering from injuries and suspensions. However, we cannot start to feel sorry for ourselves. I thought the workrate and application of the players was absolutely fantastic in very difficult conditions.

“Everyone at the club is frustrated at how things are going and we know that the fans are frustrated but we were back in on Sunday to channel that frustration in the right way.

“Goals change games as until Dumbarton took the lead we were very much in the game. I felt comfortable and I thought we were on the ascendancy but things went against us. The elements played a part as the players lost sight of the ball in blizzard conditions and that led to a very disappointing outcome.”

The St Mirren and Queen of the South game was called off early on Saturday morning, while the Falkirk and Livingston game was postponed after Storm 
Desmond caused damage to the Main Stand roof at the Falkirk Stadium.