Sending off proves costly for brave Saints

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The scoreline suggests that this was a comprehensive win for the home side but this was certainly not the case.

The new 4G pitch at Spain Park posed some problems for a few Banchory players who tended to slip on the surface, but the real setback was keeper Grant Sim being sent off after 18 minutes.

The remaining players played their hearts out to hold Dee to 3-2 with four minutes remaining and then the wheels fell off the cart.

Both sides had early chances before Dee opened the scoring on 9 minutes but within a minute Scott GARRETT levelled when he robbed the full back to shoot low past the keeper.

A Dee forward was unmarked when a cross came in but with the goal at his mercy he headed well wide.

However the game turned after 18 minutes when Sim was shown a red card when he dived at the feet of Dee’s forward and brought him down.

Substitute goalkeeper Tim Capstick came on but could not stop Dee going 2-1 in front from the penalty spot.

Despite being down to 10 men Saints were coping well with Dee finding it difficult to make any breakthrough.

From a Dee free kick a header came off the Saints bar but the linesman ruled offside in any case. In fact Saints were playing the offside trap well which was frustrating the home side.

Garrett posed problems on the break and from one such move Saints’ top scorer was denied with a save at the expense of a corner, and from the flag kick there were loud claims for a penalty when Richard Stainer seemed to be impeded.

But from another corner on 41 minutes STAINER made no mistake with a first time low left foot shot to make it 2-2 at half time.

Within five minutes of the restart, Saints’ captain Darren Pyper had to be replaced by Steve Gray.

On 53 minutes Capstick did well to save right on the goal line when a goal seemed certain and four minutes later he saved the day again when he dived in amongst feet after a goalmouth scramble.

However Dee took the lead on 65 minutes when Scaiff beat three defenders to shoot low past Capstick to make it 3-2 to the home side.

Back came Saints though and a Stainer-Garrett move saw the letter’s effort saved well.

Capstick had to be quick off his line to block at the edge of his box and from the rebound Murray Buchan prevented a certain goal when he slid the ball past the post with 20 minutes remaining.

Dee were pressing now and Capstick had to make another important save. The Banchory legs were beginning to tire but the effort was still there to keep the deficit at one goal.

The post came to Saints’ rescue with ten minutes remaining and then out of the blue from a quick a minute later, Garrett was pushed in the back inside the box and after consultation with his linesman the referee pointed to the spot.

Richard Stainer stepped up but his effort was saved by the keeper’s legs and went out for a corner.

From the corner Dee broke up the field to score their fourth.

Two minutes into injury time a cruel break of the ball after a Capstick save made it five and a minute later it was six.

Speaking after the match, Banchory assistant manager Raymond Gorski said: “I could not have asked for more from the players against an in-form Banks O’Dee team.”

Saints: Grant Sim (Tim Capstick), Darren Pyper (Steve Gray), Josh Robertson, Chris Donald, Murray Buchan, Campbell Watt, Shaun Carrol, Daniel Ross, Richard Stainer, Scott Garrett, Cammy Gray. Subs: John Smith

Saints have one game left at home against FC Stoneywood, but at the time of writing this fixture has not been scheduled and will not be until after Saturday 12th May.