FIVE STAR GFR MARCH ON
BSC GLASGOW 0
SCOTTISH LOWLAND LEAGUE
Goal hero Scott Taylor Mackenzie believes his team's newly-found no-fear attitude has helped them chalk up five wins in a row. The 24-year-old netted twice at Netherdale against BSC Glasgow to move Neil Hastings' team within two points of leaders East Kilbride.
Taylor Mackenzie said: "BSC are for me probably the best team in the league yet we showed out there that we have the strength and belief to more than match them.
"I'm delighted with my goals but even more delighted that we have kept this winning run going.
"We no longer fear teams and that shows - and there's no reason we can't keep this run going."
The visitors arrived at Gala full of confidence following an unbeaten start to the season. And they showed during the first half, by keeping Gala pinned deep for long periods, why they are genuine title challengers. Despite the high pressing from the Stephen Swift's team, though, the Fairydean Rovers were still able to mount eye-catching counter attacks. And the best chances in the opening 20 minutes both fell to Gala with Phil Addison being denied by a Craig McCracken goal-line clearance, and Danny Galbraith shaving the bar with a dipping freekick.
Michael Anderson did have a great opportunity to fire BSC in front approaching the half hour but he shot a foot over after being threaded through. But within a couple of minutes Ross Aitchison was also sent on his way by a clever Addison flick, only to be denied by a fine Stephen Barr block. The Fairydean Rovers could count themselves fortunate to still be level at the interval as Darren Christie's angled cross on 44 minutes was steered against the post by Ryan Tierney.
But the half time clean sheet was deserved by the makeshift pairing of Craig McBride and Gareth Rodger along with their impressive full-backs, Calum Hall and Lewis Grant, by standing up well to BSC's movement and pace. It was McBride who had a chance at the start of the second half to edge Gala in front but his snapshot inside the area was comfortably saved by Barr. But the home team didn't have too long to wait until the opener.
On the hour Archie Roue's low freekick from the wide on the left was dummied by near-post runner Addison, allowing Scott Taylor Mackenzie to blast home from eight yards. Worse was to follow for BSC just a few minutes later as Andy Geggan collected his second yellow card for again tripping Taylor Mackenzie in midfield.
Gala almost immediately took advantage of the extra man with both Addison and Aitchison being denied by Barr in the space of three minutes. Substitute Marc Berry was also denied by a goalline clearance after latching onto Addison's clever cut back. But BSC still posed a threat and McCracken headed a deep freekick just a few inches over Fraser Morton's bar.
Gala needed the safety net of a second and it almost arrived in the 84th minute as Jacob Campbell this time ran onto an Addison cut-back, only to have his shot palmed away by Barr at his near post. The second goal arrived just two minutes later as a corner was only cleared as far as Taylor Mackenzie, who smashed a low shot into the net from 15 yards.
Gala manager Neil Hastings said: "In terms of spirit and character, it was there in abundance. "BSC are flying this season and edged the first half, yet we stood up to that and came out as the better team in the second half".
"I thought every player for us out there was excellent for us today."
Gala Fairydean Rovers. F Morton, L Grant, C Hall, C McBride, G Rodger, S Taylor Mackenzie, A Roue (M Berry 70), R Aitchison, P Addison (A Walsh 88), D Galbraith (L Campbell 89) & J Campbell (S Ward 89).