Queen’s Park 2 Cove Rangers 1

A double from Simon Murray secured Queen’s Park third Championship win in a row with Cove Rangers seen off 2-1 at Ochilview.

Spiders Head Coach Owen Coyle not surprisingly selected the same starting XI that did so well in last Saturday’s 2-1 success at Arbroath with the substitutes’ bench strengthened with the experience of Jason Naismith and Joshua McPake.

The visitors included former Black and White favourite Luis Longstaff in their starting line-up however their skipper Mitch Megginson was absent due to injury.

With just three minutes gone some magic from Dom Thomas saw the wide-man break past Shay Logan and drill for goal with Kyle Gourlay using both hands to block his powerful effort.

The visiting Charlie Gilmour picked up an early booking for clattering into Grant Savoury some 30 yards from the Cove goal. Murray cracked the dead ball into the visiting wall before it was chipped back into the box with no home striker close enough to head home.

Cove responded by creating their first chance when Cieran Dunne reached the by-line and picked out Fraser Fyvie at the back post with Calum Ferrie in the perfect place to grab the one-time FA Cup winner’s downward header.

The Aberdeen side threatened again on 17 minutes when a corner from Iain Vigurs was met by the head of Morgyn Neill with a deflection taking the ball over the bar.

Midway through the half a touch from Thomas teed up Murray 25 yards from goal and the skipper tried a first-time effort that Gourlay was able to watch clear his goal.

On 25 minutes Neill met a corner from Gilmour and this time his header beat Ferrie however Murray popped up on the goalline to clear.

With both sides chasing the opener Savoury forced Gourlay into a diving save with Tommy Robson moving sharply to clear a dangerous ball from Dunne.

On 32 minutes Thomas sent over a swerving cross that became a shot as it crashed off the post, hit the inrushing Murray, and dropped wide of the Cove goal.

Gourlay then produced heroics in the space of a few seconds as he pushed out a low Murray effort and then palmed over a Scott Williamson drive as Queen’s worked the ball around the box to create a second chance.

The Spiders created another chance on 36 minutes when Murray chipped the ball across goal for Savoury with the wide-midfielder heading wide.

Ninety seconds from the break Queen’s got the perfect chance to get the goal that the game deserved when Connor Scully was judged to have used his arm to block a Williamson cross.

MURRAY took his time from 12 yards out and slotted the ball into Gourlay’s right hand corner despite the shot-stopper diving the right way.

Cove made a change at the break with Leighton McIntosh coming on for Gerry McDonagh and they were soon on the attack however a perfect sliding tackle from Lee Kilday ended the danger.

Before 50 minutes had been played Williamson fired a shot wide of goal with Dunne doing likewise at the other end.

On 57 minutes Williamson led a lightning raid up the park before finding Murray who sent a curling effort just over Gourlay’s goal from 20 yards.

Fraser Fyvie darted deep into the home box just after the hour mark however he delayed in shooting and the chance was gone despite Shay Logan swinging over a delightful cross.

On 64 minutes it was two for Queen’s and two for MURRAY who picked up a misplaced pass back to his own box from Fyvie and dribbled past Mark Reynolds before finishing low at the near post.

Within a minute Cove pulled a goal back as Vigurs picked out McIntosh with a chipped pass and the substitute drilled into the far corner from seven yards.

On 71 minutes Queen’s looked set to score a ‘Goal of the Season’ contender as a fine flowing move ended with Murray sending Jack Thomson clear on goal however Gourlay blocked the midfielder’s effort with his legs.

Johnny Kenny came on with 17 minutes left and the on-loan Celtic attacker was quickly involved as he sent a ball fizzing across the face of the Cove goal and then fired in a shot that Gourlay pushed wide.

Fyvie created danger again with a run through the home midfield and into the box with Ferrie dropping down low to save.

Murray was denied a hat-trick by Gourlay before requiring attention for a knock that saw him replaced by Josh McPake.

Cove looked to pile pressure on in the closing stages with Ferrie called upon to keep out a low shot from Robbie Leitch in injury time however the final whistle came and it was three wins in a row for Coyle’s team.

Queen’s Park: Calum Ferrie, Jake Davidson (Alex Bannon 90+4′), Lee Kilday, Stephen Eze, Tommy Robson, Grant Savoury, Jack Thomson, Malachi Boateng, Dom Thomas, Scott Williamson (Johnny Kenny 73′), Simon Murray (Josh McPake 81′).  Subs not used: Jason Naismith, Liam Brown, Louis Longridge, Lewis Moore, Patrick Jarrett, Jacques Heraghty (G/k).

Cove Rangers: Kyle Gourlay; Shay Logan, Connor Scully, Morgyn Neill, Gerry McDonagh (Leighton McIntosh 46′), Cieran Dunne (Jamie Masson 76′), Charlie Gilmour, Iain Vigurs, Luis Longstaff (Robbie Leitch 57′), Fraser Fyvie, Mark Reynolds. Subs not used: Stuart McKenzie, Rhys Thomas

Referee: Willie Collum

Queen's Starting 11

Man of the Match - Simon Murray

Post-Match interviews

Match Highlights

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