Reserves v Raith Rovers
DUNFERMLINE 1 RAITH ROVERS 0
In theory reserve fixtures exist to give squad players match practice but such was the severity of this winter the final match of the Pars Reserve League Cup section was played on Cup Final day. For the second fixture in a row it was the U17s who duly turned up to face their Raith Rovers counterparts.Jamie Birnie took the place of the injured Scott McIntosh - the only change from the side that demolished Arbroath last week.
Ben Martin was pushed up into midfield and he was first to create danger in the fifth minute with an impressive break from inside his own half to eventually pick out Blair Henderson to his right but the striker misjudged his run and the offside flag was raised. At the other end Jordan Malley flashed the ball across the front of the Pars goal but most of the early play was in the middle of the park.
On 20 minutes Rovers Jamie Stewart was well placed on the edge of the Pars box when a long ball dropped nicely for him but the home defence squeezed him out. Henderson sent over a ball from the right that Fraser Moncrieff connected with but his shot was blocked. Scott Mercer's 23rd minute shot was headed back out only as far as Ross Drummond but his low drive was held by keeper Gall.
Scott Main pumped over a free kick that Malley turned and despatched into the McCathie Stand. Then a Dunfermline free kick was sent into the opposition box by Grant Munro but Henderson couldn't get enough control on the ball to shoot.
In 29 minutes McHattie's free kick was laid off by Henderson for Martin to fire narrowly off target. The first half ended with Dunfermline forcing four successive corners but at the break the scoreline was to remain goalless.
Half Time: Dunfermline 0 Raith Rovers 0
A powerful free kick from 25 yards by Shaun BYRNE put the home team into the lead with just ten minutes of the second half gone.
Raith with their manager John McGlynn sitting in the crowd in the North West stand, attempted to retrieve their situation. The ball was thumped across and around the Pars box but Goodfellow was not really tested.
In 74 minutes Blair Henderson was gifted the ball after a poor kick from the Rovers keeper but he chose to shoot at the keeper when a release to Jordan Glennie to his left might have proved more fruitful. Six minutes later Henderson prodded an inviting ball into the Raith box and this time the defence denied Glennie just pinching the ball away from him at the vital point.
In the end the result was of no importance since both clubs had already qualified for the Reserve League Cup semi finals. Raith as runners up in the East Section will play West winners, Annan Athletic and Dunfermline await results elsewhere to see if their opponents will be Stenhousemuir, Ayr United or Partick Thistle. It is likely that the Pars will deploy their U19s in the semi final, date of which is still to be arranged.
DUNFERMLINE: Ryan Goodfellow, Jamie Birnie (Ross Dickson 51),Kerr Young, Grant Munro, Kevin McHattie; Scott Mercer, Ben Martin, Shaun Byrne, Ross Drummond (Craig McManus 71);, Fraser Moncreiff (Jordan Glennie 66), Blair Henderson
SUBS: Steven Mayne (GK)
SCORER: Byrne (56)
YELLOW CARD: Byrne (62)
RAITH ROVERS: Jonothan Gall; Reece Donaldson, Scott Main, Callam MacNeil, Jamie Stewart, Ross Callachan, Jordan Malley, Trialist, Jack Nicholson, Andrew Walls
SUBS: Jordan Law, Matthew Kerr, Mark Aitken, Rory Mooney, Alister McKenzie
REFEREE: Ian Craig
WEATHER: Sunny, Cold 15C