East Fife 1-2 Peterhead

The Methil men slumped to defeat at home to Peterhead.
The Methil men slumped to defeat at home to Peterhead.

A few weeks back East Fife boss Barry Smith called on his side to make sure their impressive season wasn’t allowed to just peter out.

Sadly defeats like this are going to go a long way to make sure that’s exactly just what happens.

It would be a terrible shame if East Fife’s campaign ended with a whimper.

Last season’s League Two winners have proved they’re more than capable of mixing it with the best in a division higher.

But there’s no doubt they’re going through a real sticky patch at the minute.

Bad runs are part and parcel of the game, all teams go through them.

If this one doesn’t end soon, though, it’s going to kill off the season.

East Fife have played the bottom two sides in the division and have taken zero points - there’s no doubt that’s frustrating.

There’s no head scratching being done around the club to work out why the side has failed to pick up as many points as they’d have liked.

No manager likes to blame injuries for a drop in form but sometimes that’s not an excuse - it’s a reason.

Looking around the stands over the past few weeks you have not just first team starters but key players kicking their heels.

No side in the division could cope with being without the likes of Jonathan Page, Kyle Wilkie, Tony Wallace and Scott Robinson.

Kevin Smith has been playing through injury when he really shouldn’t, as has Pat Slattery.

That’s going to cripple a squad and sadly that’s just what’s happening.

On Saturday the Fifers were unable to edge out a Peterhead side battling for its League One status.

Rory McAllister went close to breaking the deadlock after just a few minutes but found Mark Hurst equal to his strike.

That would be a familiar theme throughout the game with Hurst called upon a few times to keep out the Peterhead talisman.

The visitors took the lead when Jamie Stevenson picked out Jamie Redman 10 yards from goal.

Redman made no mistake and lashed his strike past Hurst.

Barely six minutes had passed before East Fife were level.

Nicki Paterson’s corner kick was superb and Jason Kerr gave it the finish it deserved by heading past Fraser Hobday.

Sadly the Fifers couldn’t kick on from the goal and it was Peterhead who grabbed the crucial third goal of the game.

This time it was Stevenson’s turn to drop in a pint point delivery from a corner and Craig Reid was on hand to glance his header beyond Hurst.

Bayview boss Barry Smith said: “We need to keep working hard and it will turn.

“There are three games left and it’ll turn for us, we’re confident we can do that.

“There’s still a lot to play for and for as much we’re disappointed with the defeat, Saturday brings another game and another challenge.”