The more disappointed of the sides this evening must surely be the Doonhamers as they put on a tremendous performance against the league leaders but just failed to snatch that elusive winner. John Connolly's pre-match talk to his side warned them that they could not afford to give their opponents any time on the ball, the warning was clearly understood as every man in the Queens side made sure that they closed down their opponents throughout the match at every opportunity.
The side saw only one change with Joe McAlpine sitting on the bench and Brian McLaughlin taking up Joe's role wide left, the match started at speed and never really slowed down, first up were Queens through Derek Lyle and Peter Weatherson who worked well all afternoon. After ten minutes it looked to many like Queens had scored as from a corner Derek Lyle had an effort deflected just past the far post then from the second corner Steve Bowey saw his driven effort beaten away. A goal looked likely and sure enough it came a few moments later as Brian McColligan notched his first for Queens as he nodded a cross into the middle of the net.
Falkirk, whilst looking dangerous down their left didn't cause Queens any real danger until twenty minutes into the half when Jim Thomson had to look very sharp to clear danger, Derek Anderson, who looked very effective in the heart of the defence today, then followed his captains lead and managed to take the ball away from a Falkirk forward as they homed in on goal and looked favourite to win the race.
This was about as much as Andy Goram had to do in the first half
Queens though were soon back in control and from a deep cross from the right side Steve Bowey sent a header goalward, his effort was deflected to Peter Weatherson but with Nellie having his back to goal his turn and shot was also pushed away by the Falkirk defence. Three minutes later and another Bowey effort was pushed away by the 'keeper, the ball falling to Derek Lyle and the strikers effort cleared away.
HALF TIME 1-0
Mr McCall's team talk at the break seemed to have an immediate effect as the Falkirk side immediately put Queens on the back foot at the start of the second period. Sponsors Man of the Match, Brian McColligan making a headed clearance off the line with Goram beaten in the first few minutes and then, after a series of corners Falkirk scoring the equaliser when a Kevin James effort was pushed out only as far as John Henry who finished calmly.
The Falkirk pressure continued for the first fifteen minutes of the half until Queens regained their composure and began to chase the ball down again. Peter Weatherson showed the way with one of his now familiar snap shots from outside the box, this effort though just cleared the corner of the upright and the bar with the 'keeper well beaten.
Sean O'Connor was introduced with twelve minutes left, replacing John O'Neill, and the big man was involved immediately as a free kick on the edge of the box caused trouble in the Falkirk defence with the ball going out for a corner, from the corner Jim Thomson was adjudged to have fouled his marker and a free kick was awarded to the Bairns. The kick was taken quickly with their 'keeper crashing the ball into the back of his own defender, Peter Weatherson was quick to react as the ball ran loose in the box but the referee who had been facing the other way declared that Falkirk should take the kick again, much to everyone's amazement.
Queens then almost pressed the self destruct button as Jim Thomson had three attempts to clear his lines yet failed to do so and eventually the defence gave away a free-kick. Queens though had the last word as Sean O'Connor broke forward and attempted to shoot, his effort though was blocked and it fell wide left to Brian McLaughlin, the wing mans curling effort didn't trouble Hill in the Falkirk goal too much as he gathered comfortably.
In the end Queens performance deserved a victory, however the side showed today that they have what it takes to make a big impression on this league.