GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 4 LUGAR BOSWELL THISTLE 0
Scorers: Deeney, Eeles, Whalen (2)
The Glens got their Ardagh Ayrshire League Cup campaign off to a winning start with a comfortable 4-0 win over a hard working Lugar side, with all four goals coming from three of the new summer signings. Kevin Deeney grabbing the first goal with just under 6 minutes on the clock, Simon Eeles then doubled the Glens advantage with all but the last kick of the first half and Stephen Whalen hit a quick fire double within 5 minutes of the re-start to complete the scoring.
Before the opening goal arrived Frankie Haggarty's powerful running down the right flank had already troubled the visitors defence on more than one occasion. His reward came soon after with the award of a corner kick which he floated high into the box and although John McCaig got his head to the ball he could only help it on its way to the far side of the penalty box where Deeney was lurking. As the defender closed in on Dino he took the deftest of touches to lay the ball into the path of Willie Howie who then played 'pig-in-the-middle' with the defender and rolled the ball back to former Beith man, who then picked his spot and struck the ball home with great finesse, 'Sunshine from Beith', indeed!
The Glens' left flank was also proving to be a source of frustration for the Boswell rearguard stemming from the blossoming partnership of Stevie Agnew and Simon Eeles; the lightning thinking of the former matched by the lightning pace of the latter. If truth be told there was little respite for the visitors through the middle as well with the experienced Stephen Whalen shielding and holding the ball to release dynamo David Gormley and to add to the wee Jags woes Steven McGregor would often venture forth across the half-way line to lead the charge.
Whalen went close with an overhead kick deep in the Boswell box and then Deeney almost added to his tally from close range but he couldn't find the gap between three defenders and the goalie playing sardines in the six yard box. A long range daisy cutter from Howie was saved well by the goalkeeper and his defender was alert to block Eeles from knocking the rebound home.
Lugar took heart from surviving the siege and although they had broke into the Glens half on the odd occasion they had failed to breach the back-line of McCaig, McGregor and Andy Gow and really test Gary Matthews. With 30 minutes on the clock they were about to do just that when the run was brought an abrupt end at the edge of the box, but the resulting free-kick came to nothing.
In the dying seconds of the half another Haggarty corner this time from the left was only paritally cleared by the Boswell defence and Aggie picked up the rebound and ran the ball to the corner to deliver it back to Frankie and determined play saw him take the ball along the bye-line and lay it back to Eeles, who had ghosted into the box, but not before registering that the goalie had taken a few tentative steps off his line. Those that had witnessed his mouth-watering goal against Maybole last week would realise that the temptation was too much for Si and with only one thing on his mind he exquisitely lobbed the ball over the forlorn goalie who could only watch as his executioner celebrated before the ball finally dropped into the back of the net.
Half-time Glenafton 2 Lugar 0
The second half was but a minute old when McCaig and Haggarty combined well down the right wing and Frankie fired in another deadly cross which Stephen Whalen headed home from a few yards out giving the goalie no chance. If it's possible the luckless keeper had even less than no chance four minutes later when the ball fell to Whalen a good 25 yards from goal who then struck it as sweet as a candy-coated nut and thundered an unstoppable shot into the rigging.
Just before the hour mark Lugar's luck in front of goal deserted them as they looked certain to claw one back during a goal line scramble but they found out that John McCaig is as wide as he is tall when he lies across the goalmouth!
Normal service was then resumed and Whalen loooked a good bet to grab his hat-trick with another peach of volley which beat the keeper but whistled over the bar. Another shot whizzed past the post as did a free-kick from the edge of the box.
The Glens then made some changes with John McMillan, Brian Miller and John Paul Grant all coming on at some point in the closing twenty minutes. McMillan came close to adding to the Glens tally with a fine run into the box but on this occasion the keeper advanced far enough to force Johnnie to lob the ball over the bar and there was to be no further scoring.
Full time: Glenafton 4 Lugar 0
Glenafton Athletic: Matthews; McCaig, Gow, McGregor, Agnew; Haggarty, Howie, Deeney (Grant), Eeles (Miller); Gormley (McMillan), Whalen
Glens 1-0: Willie Howie and John McCaig watch Kevin Deeney's shot beat the goalie
Glens 2-0: Simon Eeles lob makes it 2-0
Stephen Whalen heads home to make it 3-0
Stephen Whalen pulls the trigger and its 4-0
Flag day for Frankie - a hand in three of the goals!