Lawrie turns it on......
Another fine day at Denny Ross greeted the players who are slowly coming to terms with the new kick-off time of noon which is in force for all the home matches this season. Some players had commitments and could only play for half a game so the line-up was adjusted to suit. A first minute attack by the Classics ended with a corner after a wayward backpass from a United defender. In the 8th. minute a right wing run by Jimmy Butler was finished with the ball being pulled back to DARYL Lawrie who hit it goalwards. It was rising all the time and bounced down off the crossbar, England v Germany style, and just over the line. There were cries from the defenders that the ball had not crossed over the line but
the Russian linesman just in case there was any doubt the ball then spun out and hit the back of the sprawling goalkeeper and bounced back over the line to confirm the marker - who needs goal-line technology? Just two minutes later a great through ball from Butler sent Lawrie away again for a one-on-one with the keeper but he tamely chipped the ball into the keeper's hands.
The first attack from the visitors came in the 9th. minute after a Willie Dixon slip which allowed a player through but he made a hash of it to save Willie's blushes. Dixon was again in the action on the quarter-hour mark with a left wing foray but his centre was cleared away. Pat O'Krane sent a defence splitting pass through in the 20th. minute which Dixon just failed to connect with after a neat flick on from Lawrie. It was Butlers turn to attack down the left on the half hour mark; he slipped the ball to Warren Crowley who sliced the ball well wide to the left of the keeper and to the left of the post. Pat Rolah send over a great ball from the right flank after a tremendous run but the United defence dealt with it comfortably and headed it away for a corner. The resultant kick was played short to Randy Hosler who tried one from distance and was unlucky to see it sail just over the crossbar. Three minutes from the half an excellent cross from another Rohla corner bobbled around the goal area before it came out to Butler who lashed it goalwarsds. The ball hit a defender, then the keeper, before going in off the post to make it a deserved 2-0 lead at the half. Butler and Hosler had to leave at the half time mark.
Tri-City pulled a goal back in the 47th. minute, albeit in controversial circumstances. The goal was similar to Lawries as it hit the underside of the crossbar and bounced down. It looked like it did not cross the line. Despite Judd Boxtart's insistence that the ball had not crossed the line the Russian linesman awarded the goal so it was 'game on' at 2-1. Lawrie was working exceptionally hard and was covering lots of ground as well as looking mean and dangerous on the ball. He got his deserved reward in the 50th. minute of the game when he turned a defender inside out before going at the visiting keeper in a one-one one. Lawrie pushed the ball past the advancing keeper to score a great goal which gave the advantage back to the homesters. Three minutes later it was a Pat-Pat attack - Rohla put O'Krane through but he shot well wide. O'Krane had another, easier, chance in a one-on-one with the keeper but this time he didn't shoot wide, he neatly chipped the ball directly into the keeper's hands - that takes some skill! David Breen was called away to duty and had to leave the game but he managed to return just before the end.
Boxtart was being tested more and more and he was showing competency, both with his handling and his distribution, which was exceptional. As the last 15 minutes of the game took hold Chuck McGill put Lawrie through who tried to chip the ball over the keeper but who knows what went wrong as the ball went well wide of those white sticks which hold up the nets. That would have sealed the game. Another twist was to come with 12 minutes left as Boxtart came out to clear the ball with Jensen and Gene Crowley ready to hoof the ball away. Boxtart called but inexplicably completely missed the ball which a grateful United attacker just rolled the ball home to make it 3-2. It was squeeky bum time now as anything could happen. Lawrie made another piercing right flank attack and floated the ball over to Dixon who just failed to connect. With six minutes of the game left there was a mix up in the United defence and Dixon won the ball well and slipped it past a defender. Both Dixon and Lawrie were queueing up to get the ball - it was a case of take a number. However, Dixon selfishly took it upon himself to to put the ball home for the insurance goal. There was a collective sigh of relief as the ball slowly rolled over the line. The last action came as Jensen missed the ball, or was it a clever dummy? However, it came to nothing. Lawrie has managed to get 11 mentions in this short write-up - I wonder why?
MWG: D. Lawrie
Crap Award: J. Boxtart (the trial period is over)