Pollok took the short trip to the north of the city to take on Petershill in the second round of the West of Scotland League Cup. The home team have made a decent start to their First Division campaign as they look to bounce straight back to the Premier Division.
Manager Maxwell made five changes to the team which started the game against Dalry when Pollok exited the Junior Cup on penalties. Ben Fry, Calum Gow, Chris Duff, Evan Maley and Hugh Kerr all sat out as Jordan Longmuir, Scott Forrester, Ross Lindsay, Andy Gallacher and Adam Forde returned to the starting lineup.
Pollok were the first to threaten when a Sean Burns cross was cleared only as far as Ryan McGregor whose drive from twenty-five yards was gathered at the second attempt by Miller. Petershill responded with a long-range drive of their own. Former Pollok star, Derek Hepburn’s effort going over the bar.
Lindsay saw a deflected effort tipped over the bar by Miller and from the resultant corner Nelson’s header suffered the same fate as Pollok won another corner. Just as it looked like the away side might be starting to exert some control, the opening goal arrived at the other end of the park.
A long free kick was floated into the box and headed over. However the referee had spotted Lindsay holding back his man and awarded a spot kick. Higgins made no mistake from twelve yards out as he slammed the ball high past Longmuir to give Petershill the lead with seventeen minutes on the clock.
The Southsiders were level ten minutes later. A Petershill goal kick was headed over the defence by Jay Nelson and Forde raced onto it, before lobbing the ball over the keeper and in off the underside of the bar.
Petershill then had three shooting opportunities from free-kicks with two missing the target and the other one coming back off the bar, with Longmuir rooted to the spot. For the away side Gallacher and then Nelson both worked shooting opportunities but couldn’t find the target so the teams went in level at the break.
HALF TIME: PETERSHILL 1 – 1 POLLOK
Pollok started the second half on the front foot and gained a territorial advantage without creating too many clear-cut chances. Christie saw a shot saved after an enterprising run across the box and a couple of corners came to nothing. At the other end Burrows headed away a goal bound shot.
A ball over the top from Longmuir was beautifully controlled by Forde before a very clever lob came back off the bar. His next sight of goal however, was to have a very different outcome. With ten minutes to go, a Mullen free kick from his own half was headed down by McGregor. Forde was quick to pounce and took it round the keeper before finishing from a tight angle.
A similar combination worked its’ magic as the game went into injury time. Mullen’s free-kick was returned across the goal by a spectacular overhead kick by McGregor and Forde squeezed a header home at the back post. It not only sealed the win and his hat trick but was also his 100th goal for Pollok. A tremendous achievement, with Forde being only the eighth player in the club’s 115-year history to reach that landmark!
After the disappointing midweek Junior Cup exit Pollok merited their progression in the West of Scotland League Cup and the next round will bring another tough test – away to Clydebank.
FULL TIME: PETERSHILL 1 – 3 POLLOK
PETERSHILL: Higgins (P)(17′)
POLLOK: Forde (27′, 80′, 90’+2)
Man of the Match: Adam Forde
Report by Peter Thomson
Photographs from Finlay Thom
Match Highlights from Mark Donnelly
Post-match interview with Stewart Maxwell