Dunfermline 3 - 1 Stranraer: Pars show late heroics

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Naivety in both defence in attack prevented Dunfermline from winning this match long before their late heroics, writes Craig Fowler at East End Park.

Luke Johnston scored the goal that finally put the hosts in front, but it was the on-loan Dundee United defender, three days shy of his 20th birthday, who’d put his side in a first half deficit.

The centre-back was too eager in trying to challenge Martin Grehan going away from goal and the clumsy challenge resulted in a penalty.

Ryan Scully managed to save Chris Aitken’s spot-kick, but Mark Corcoran drove the ball back into the six-yard box where it was diverted home by Grehan.

Stranraer will be disappointed that, for all their solid defensive work, they failed to hang on to the lead for even 60 seconds.

A cross from the right was allowed to be headed on by Ryan Wallace – perhaps the shortest player on the park – and Andy Geggan swept past the goalkeeper.

Dunfermline put their opponents under considerable pressure for long spells in the second half, but often showed their inexperience by choosing the wrong pass or overplaying the move.

In fact it was Stranraer on the counter who created the best chance when Corcoran nutmegged Ross Millen before cutting back for David McKenna. The substitute somehow side-footed his effort from 12 yards wide of the target.

Finally the hosts’ desperation prevailed with Johnston forcing the ball home after an almighty scramble in the penalty area.

Substitute Alan Smith then made sure of the points with an angled drive into the far corner.