Morton 1 - 1 Stirling Albion

Morton 1 - Russell (8), Stevenson missed pen (84)
Stirling Albion 1- Ellis(61)

Att - 2,802

Jamie Stevenson squandered a golden chance to take all three points - and could've caused a traffic incident on the main road - when he blazed a late penalty over the bar at the Sinclair Street end.

Morton took the lead when rejuvenated right winger Kevin Finlayson burst down the right hand side to clip a superb ball to Iain Russell who was lurking at the edge of the six yard box towards the back post. The ball was slightly behind Russell who did well to crane his neck back and get enough power to guide the ball into the net past Christie.

After the goal Morton dominated without overly impressing. In these periods of domination we have to kill off teams like Stirling at home. Our failure to turn our possession into chances and, ultimately, goals turned out to be our downfall. Our best effort apart from the goal was a strong Greacen header that Christie did well to touch over.

Whatever Allan Moore said at half time worked. Stirling came out and took the game to Morton. When their goal arrived it was the culmination of 15 minutes of play where an equaliser for the visitors seemed inevitable. Ex-St. Mirren defender Laurie Ellis ghosted in at the front post to head a near post corner past McGurn.

David McKenna - another ex-St. Mirren player - was sent off in the 69th minute for a second bookable offence. This second offence was a shirt pull on Kevin Finlayson as he broke by him in the Morton half. Moore must've been furious in the away team dug out but as usual he blames the referee for 'soft bookings' when the second was a clear shirt pull that definitely merited a yellow - the first booking I can't remember.

It could be argued that the opposition going down to 10 men was more of a hindrance than a help as they camped in their own half allowing Morton's centre-backs to pass the ball along the back line looking for angles and gaps ahead of them. Ryan Harding took it upon himself to break them down when he played a superb one two with Kevin Finlayson and strode into the box only to be felled by former Morton trialist John Paul McBride for a stone wall penalty. Regular penalty taker Jamie Stevenson - on as a second half substitute - strode forward confidently only to balloon the ball over the bar. For me, skying a penalty is criminal. I know it's all cliche stuff but you have at least hit the target and make the keeper work from that range. Going by the reports in the media that suggested Jamie was distraught by the miss I suspect we'll see someone else taking the responsibility the next time.

Morton went from a glorious chance of three points to a few inches away from losing it shortly afterwards. Stirling burst forward and Derek Lilley (my Morton hero in his first spell, definitely not in his second) guided the ball narrowly wide from a right wing cross.

Chris Millar impressed again after last week's performance earned him a starting place. Michael Gardyne was another new starter this week but didn't see much of the ball and failed to impress when he did have it.

A draw was just about a fair result but Jamie Stevenson must be kicking himself for his penalty miss that cost his team the three points.

Morton (4-4-2):

1. McGurn - 6
2. Weatherson - 6
3. McAnespie - 6 (12. Stevenson - 64 mins)
4. Harding - 7
5. Greacen - 7
6. Shields - 6 (14. Templeman - 75 mins)
7. Finlayson - 7
8. Millar - 8
9. Russell - 7
10. Gardyne - 6 (15. Walker - 58 mins)
11. McAlister - 5

Subs Not Used:

15. Graham
17. Keenan

Stirling: Christie, Nugent, Forsyth, Ellis, Reid, Aitken, Harris, McBride, Cramb (Lilley 79), McKenna, Taggart (Devine 85). Subs Not Used: Tomana, Graham, Hogarth.

Sent Off: McKenna (69).

My man of the match: Chris Millar

Sponsor's man of the match: Iain Russell

Matchday Programme (Click to enlarge)

BBC Match report: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/scot_div_1/7074141.stm

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