Cumbernauld United drew 3-3 at Blantyre Vics on Saturday in an all action start to their Super League First Division campaign, writes Eric Drever.
In a lively start Blantyre had the first opportunity when Steven Higgins, despite Cumbernauld claims for offside, got in on goal but his effort was brilliantly stopped by United keeper Jamie McGowan.
Cumbernauld, playing some good football, then began to threaten the Vics goal and a Ross Foley/Tony Stevenson move gave Simon Eeles a chance but the winger’s effort cleared the bar.
Blantyre keeper Scott Law had to rush out of his goal to rob Eeles who was finding a lot of space on the right.
However it was the hosts who went ahead in the 24th minute when, from a long ball down the middle, Higgins got the better of the United defenders and fired the ball past McGowan.
A minute later it was all square. Mikey McLaughlin, by sheer persistence, got free of his marker and his low cross was met by Ryan Tiffany for the equaliser.
Play continued from end to end and just before the break Higgins, in the clear, hit the post with another effort.
Vics then hit the underside of the bar and the ball, fortunately for Cumbernauld, rebounded to safety.
Right on the interval United took the lead. A perfect long ball from Stevenson again found Eeles who did well to cut in from the right and beat the keeper.
The home team put the pressure on at the start of the second half and got their reward when a punched clearance from McGowan was pounced on by Craig Kerr 25 yards out and he sent a screamer into the net.
Five minutes later United again went into the lead when Tiffany ignored claims for offside to slam the ball low past Law.
But again they were not ahead for long as, in 68 minutes, another long ball split the Cumbernauld defence and Higgins grabbed his second.
In the 83rd minute United skipper Ryan Sullivan had the ball in the net but the referee decided the ball had gone over the byline before substitute Dale Clark crossed.
It was still all action and a home effort hit the framework before a rocket from Cumbernauld’s James Brown was blocked.
McGowan then ensured a well won point for the visitors with a fine save from Higgins.