Cumbernauld Colts were denied victory over champions East Kilbride by a late equaliser in Friday night’s Lowland League clash at Broadwood.
The win would have moved the Cumbernauld men back into the top six, but instead Colts had to settle for a 2-2 draw and ninth place ahead of a two week break from league action.
Although Stephen O’Neill had an early chance for Colts, slicing wide with the goal at his mercy, East Kilbride enjoyed long spells of possession in the first half.
But they struggled to create any clear chances and were punished when Colts, against the run of play, took the lead on the half hour mark.
Ritchie Kirwan broke on the right before switching play to find Craig Murray on the edge of the box and the midfielder turned superbly before sending a stunning shot in off Alan Martin’s far post.
But only 10 minutes later the visitors hit back with an equaliser; from Daniel Carmichael’s corner towering defender David Brownlie bulleted a header high into the net, leaving Jonathan Grier helpless.
However Colts restored their advantage on the stroke of half-time Colts when a long defensive clearance found its way to O’Neill who coolly lifted the ball over the advancing.
After the break the visitors again enjoyed the lion’s share of possession but lacked a real cutting edge.
As the game entered the final 15 minutes they began to pile on the pressure and Grier had to be at his very best, making tremendous saves with his feet from Ruari Paton and Kieran McGrath.
As the pressure began to tell Colts midfield anchor Arnault Bembo was shown a second yellow card, leaving Colts with ten men.
And with four minutes left Paton cut the ball back for Sean Winter to drill home.
This Friday Colts face Dalbeattie Star in the South of Scotland Challenge Cup.