Stenhousemuir 1-2 East Fife: Fifers up to third in the table after comeback win at Ochilview
Goals from Alex Ferguson and Scott Shepherd completed the second
half turnaround. The Fifers have now recorded 13 points in their last 6 matches.
Greig McDonald’s men were slow out the blocks and it was the Warriors who imposed
After Warriors’ top goalscorer Matty Yates fired the hosts into a first-half lead, a second-half turnaround saw Alex Ferguson and Scott Shepherd seal three points for the Fifers.
On the day, Stenny looked at their most dangerous from set pieces and came close after 15 minutes when Sean Crighton’s driven shot hoisted over the bar following a short corner.
The deadlock was then broken after 32 minutes, after a mix-up between Allan Fleming and Jonathan Page led to the hosts earning a corner kick. The Warriors capitalised on the opportunity, with Ross Forbes linking up with Matty Yates, who coolly slotted the ball through Fleming’s legs.
East Fife came out for the second period rampant with Ryan Schiavone and Jack Healy on the wings starting to cause the hosts’ defence real bother.
On 52 minutes, Healy beat Jacob Blaney on the wing, before cutting inside and firing a low cross into the box, which Alex Ferguson was able to convert to level the match.
The Fifers never stopped and spent the rest of the half trying to put Stenhousemuir to the sword
They had the ball in the net after 70 minutes after a stramash in the air following a corner, but the referee pulled play back for a foul on Warriors’ substitute goalkeeper Jay Cantley.
The winner came ten minutes later when Schiavone turned Callum Yeats on the wing and lofted a cross to the front post which met the head of Brogan Walls – who nodded the ball back across the face of goal.
Of all people, it was goal-barren striker Shepherd who converted for the first time since September to hand East Fife three massive points in the race for promotion via the play-offs.
“They had a lot of the ball in the first half and it was a good goal for them,” boss McDonald explained post-match. “We deserved to go in a goal down. But then in the second half, it was night and day really.
"We played much better and we created so many chances, it could have been more on another day. We showed great character to come back from a goal down again in a game.
"Our midfield is so strong at the moment and Alan Trouten, Alex Ferguson and Brogan Walls have been excellent, but we also have real depth. I was able to bring on Connor McManus and Pat Slattery is back fit. That is excluding Kieran Millar too who is injured.
"We defended really well too and we restricted Stenny to long range shots which is pleasing as they are a potent team in front of goal. All round, it was just a great day for us."
Next up for East Fife this weekend is a trip to League Two’s basement club Bonnyrigg Rose Athletic, managed by Robbie Horn.