Reports from matches this season go to the fixtures section and click on the report linked to the match you want to read about. Alternatively for earlier seasons go to the fixtures section of the archive for the relevant year.
QUEEN OF THE SOUTH 1 : 0 ROSS COUNTY
16th August 2003
SUBMIT YOUR mom RATINGS
Members of the Internet Fan Club can award players marks out of ten for their performance today. The player with the most points awarded in the two days following a match will be the IFC Man of the Match. All of the points will then be added to a running total for each player and the results published in the mom League Table.
Name or IFC No.
Queens opened their home league campaign for this season at a sunny Palmerston Park today and turned in an impressive disciplined performance that ensured that the three points would remain in Dumfries. There were some shocks however with the main one being the dropping of fans favourite Andy Aitken to the bench to make way for new signing Brian Reid, Aitken not getting the left back slot as many had predicted as Joe McAlpine remained there. Also dropped to the bench this week was Sean O'Connor, he made way for Derek Lyle who had made way for Eric Paton who had moved up from right back to make way for Derek Allan who, finally, had moved sideways to make way for returning club captain Jim Thomson. The result of the two central defenders coming in meant that neither Brian McColligan nor Sandy Hodge could get a seat on the bench.
The match began at a brisk pace with both sides looking to make an early impression, it was County though that looked the more troublesome as David Winters down their left posed most of the problems for the home defenders. It was therefore a bit out of the blue when, in the eleventh minute, Eric Paton made some space for himself on the edge of the County box before shooting toward goal, his effort was not one of his best, it was low and slightly across Stewart in the visitors goal, the 'keeper though couldn't hold the effort and spilled the ball right into the path of the in-rushing Derek Lyle who accepted the opportunity with pleasure and buried the ball in the back of the net to open his league account for this term.
Wood and McCulloch tangle with McCunnie and Rankin looking on.
The match then became much more balanced and concentrated more in midfield as neither side could make a real goal chance. Jim Thomson picked up a booking in the twentieth minute as he arrived a fraction late in a challenge. Queens were looking very purposeful, on twenty-five minutes a Queens attack deserved more as Jim Thomson sent Derek Lyle clear of his marker down the right hand side of the pitch, his first time cross though was only just cleared away by a visiting defender as Wood looked eager to capitalise.
Ross County were also providing an attacking threat, mainly through Winters, and some communication problems between captain and 'keeper in the home rear guard caused concern on more than one occasion. On the half-hour it could have been all-square as a deep cross from the left wing by McKay was met by Winters at the far post, his header though was weak and straight into Dodds's hands. Then almost immediately a similar move involving the same players won a corner for the Staggies.
Gary Wood was booked in thirty-one minutes for what was a marginally late challenge. Willie Gibson though was again showing what a skilful player he has grown into as he skipped over some tackles that were lucky not to make contact as he tormented the entire right hand side of the County team, on the edge of the box the ball came free to Lyle and he rifled a shot goalward that was unfortunate to hit a defender and result in only a corner kick. Queens were enjoying their best period of pressure at this point with some sparkling moves involving Paton, Lyle and Gibson in particular.
New signing Brian Reid clears the danger.
The half finished with a couple of good moves from Queens, on forty-three minutes Queens won a free-kick on the edge of the box and with expectations rising Eric Paton stepped up only to fire the ball just past the post with the wall and Stewart well beaten. The in the last move of the half Derek Lyle played the ball to Jim Thomson who played the bal over the defence and behind Gary Wood, Wood though managed to turn on the ball and fire it towards goal, forcing Stewart to make a decent stop to end the half.
The second half started with a bang, thanks to a one-man show from Steve Bowey, as the midfield dynamo made a determined run through he heart of the County side from half-way culminating in a shot from the edge of the box that whistled by. Seconds later though and Wood picked up a throw-in before supplying Bowser with a neat flick that the Geordie latched onto and struck just past the post.
At the other end David Winters appeared to have a clear site of goal but his shot almost ended up at the corner flag as the Queens defence opened up. Then it seemed as if a goal would be conceded as Thomson and McAlpine somehow managed to allow Higgins and Hamilton room to set up David Hannah with a shot, David Bagan was on hand though to chest the ball down and partially clear the danger. The ball was played back in though as Queens came under severe pressure and Derek Allan looked to be held off the ball while a shot was fired in that didn't give Dodds any trouble.
It was an all action start to the half and Derek Lyle almost made it two as he beat his marker in a race to a superbly swung in Joe McAlpine cross, the effort beat the 'keeper but also the post.
Twenty three minutes into the half and a flowing Ross County move involving substitute Hugh Robertson almost led to an equaliser as Robertsons cross was met by Jordan Tait but his shot/flick was just wide and just high.
With the half twenty-five minutes old David Bagan had to leave the field with an injury and was replaced by youngster Paul Burns.
McCulloch gets the better of Wood this time.
Queens were now sitting back and soaking up anything that the Ross County forwards could come up with. More injury worries became apparent with fifteen minutes left to play as Joe McAlpine grasped a muscle on the back of his leg, he seemed to run it off but succumbed to the injury five minutes later after landing on the ground after an aerial challenge and was replaced by Andy Aitken, taking up the familiar left-back role.
The final change of the match for Queens came with just five minutes to play as goal scorer Derek Lyle was replaced with Sean O'Connor. There was no real action before the final whistle blew.
In summary this was a very good performance from Queens, they went out took the lead and maintained the lead and whilst there were some moments of concern, Dodds didn't have to make any particularly difficult saves and the defence coped well with whatever the visitors threw at them. Reid looked comfortable and Wood looked as though he will cause visiting sides lots of problems this term.