Reserves v HeartsMonday, 9th Mar 2020
SPFL Reserve League at New Central Park, Kelty. Connor Smith (73) 0-1: Leroy Macovora (81) 0-2:
DUNFERMLINE RESERVES 0 HEARTS RESERVES 2
The Dunfermline side that faced Hearts in this SPFL Reserve League match included only two players who started the previous reserve game against Morton. Cammy Graham and Scott Cusick were joined by a different nine.
The Hearts team included the large figure of Uche Ikpeszu and Cammy Smith’s brother Connor who is on loan at Cowdenbeath alongside with his team mate Callumn Morrison.
The visitors kicked off with the wind on their backs and they created the first chance in four minutes when Leroy Macovora was put through one on one with keeper Craig Burt. Thankfully the Pars stopped was swiftly out to boot away the ball from the edge of his box. Two minutes later Burt smothered another pass into his box with Macovora home on on him again.
Ikpeazu won a 12th minute corner, Lewis Sawers cleared but Smith returned and Alex Petkov got in a header that was cleared. Hearts continue to exert pressure on their hosts and Aidan Denholm blasted a good chance over the bar on the quarter hour.
Dunfermline’s response was a fine pass from Brogan Walls to Josh Robertson on the the right but his delivery was held by the keeper. In 21 minutes sixteen year good Arran Dair burst through the middle and showed good speed while tracked by Petkov but was forced out wide before he could get a shot in.
Back at the other end Burt made a good save with his legs after Smith had connected with a Morrison cross. From the left side Ikpeazu rifled a low effort narrowly wide right.
Lucas Berry evaded a strong challenge to send the ball left for Sawers but keeper Kelby Mason was out fast to clear. Two free-kicks were conceded on the half hour, firstly by Gregor Jordan who picked up a yellow card and then by Walls. Smith drove the first into the Pars defensive wall and Morrison smashed the second well over the top.
Graham crashed a 33rd minute effort wide left before Robertson prevented Morrison netting from an Ikpeazu cut back. The full back required treatment but was able to continue.
It had been a first half that Hearts controlled but the Fifers defence had done really well so the sides went in all square.
Half time: Dunfermline 0 Hearts 0
Hearts brought on Sean Ward in place of Uche Ikpeazu for the second half and the visitors resumed on the attack with the defence immediately deployed. Morrison smashed an effort on target in 51 minutes that Jordan blocked and next Smith headed over a good delivery from the left.
Two substitutes were introduced, Kieran Mitchell for Arran Dair and #16 Trialist for Lucas Berry before in 63 minutes Greg Shields emptied the bench by sending on Aaron Arnott, Trialist #12 and keeper Ben Swinton. Cammy Graham, Brogan Walls and Craig Burt went off.
Morrison fired a 71st minute effort in from the right and Swinton was able to gathered after initially stopping the shot. Two minutes later Morrison sent over a dangerous cross that SMITH converted from six yards to put the Jambos ahead. 0-1
Twelve minutes remained when Trialist #12 was played through and he managed to get a cross in from the right side that just evaded Sawers in front of goal.
Morrison evaded both Watson and Bragg to centre for MACOVORA and despite Jordan’s proximity the Hearts #10 clinically found the net. 0-2
A third was denied by Watson on 85th minute clearing a powerful Ward shot off the line. Morrison continued his assault on the Pars defence and was unlucky with a shot from an acute angle. Ben Garuccio cracked a free kick on to the roof of the net before Scott Cusick was denied a late consolation at the other end by Mason.
It had been a testing afternoon for the young reserve team. Hearts had dominated but had been restricted to just two goals.
- - Listen to Greg Shields post match comments
DUNFERMLINE: Craig Burt (Ben Swinton 63): Josh Robertson, Lennon Watson, Gregor Jordan, Thomas Bragg, Scott Cusick, Lucas Berry (#16 Trialist 58), Brogan Walls (Aaron Arnott 63), Lewis Sawers: Cammy Graham (c) (#12 Trialist 63): Arran Dair (Kieran Mitchell 55).
SUBS NOT USED:
YELLOW CARD: Jordan (30)
HEARTS: Kelby Mason: Cameron Logan, Ben Garuccio, Alex Petkov (c), Aaron Darge (Sean Docherty 89), Scott McGill, Callumn Morrison, Connor Smith, Uche Ikpeazu (Sean Ward HT), Leroy Macovora, Aidan Denholm (Dean Ritchie 81).
SUBS NOT USED: Mackenzie Lawler, Harris Spratt (GK)
SCORERS: Smith (73), Macovora (81)
YELLOW CARD: McGill (68)
REFEREE: Alex Shepherd
WEATHER: Cloudy 8°C
NEXT MATCH: SPFL Reserve League (home) v Morton, Tuesday 17th March 2020, 2.00pm kick off at New Central Park.
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