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Tarbert FC 4
SAFL Premier 2
Tarbert welcomed Duncanrig to Cil Andreis on league duty for what proved to be a highly entertaining game.
With conditions soft underfoot the game began with some surprisingly good passing football and Tarbert took the lead within the first five minutes.
Some nice play in the middle followed by a magnificent cross from Allan Blair on the right hand side allowed Nikki MacDougall to slot home his first of the match.
Tarbert had started well, buoyed by their recent home win over 3rd placed Easthall Star, and soon made it 2-0.
The away side were struggling to get a foothold and Tarbert were eager in the challenges.
With only 15 minutes on the clock Iain MacKinnon burst clear and fired a shot on goal – this was saved but the rebound was tucked away by MacDougall for his 2nd.
The game changed in the next 20 minutes as Duncanrig pressed to get back into the match.
A good chance came and went when their striker somehow missed the target from only three yards, Chris Selfridge saved well from a 25 yard effort but on the half hour the away side gained their reward.
Good play down the left allowed a cross shot to fizz across the Tarbert goal, the ball rebounded off the far post and straight into the path of the striker for a tap in finish.
Tarbert looked a bit nervy following this but knuckled down well to hang on to the lead for the next 10 minutes although under constant pressure.
In the last five minutes of the first half, Tarbert had two chances – the first, another fine cross from Andy Guy into the box, MacDougall headed just over the crossbar but the 2nd was converted.
More good play set MacKinnon away and his unselfish square pass set up MacDougall for his hat-trick. Half time 3-1.
The 2nd half was a feisty affair with a lot of fouls and hard challenges as both teams looked for the next goal.
Tarbert restricted Duncanrig to very few chances from close range although they did have a couple of long range efforts that were well saved by keeper Selfridge.
Tarbert looked dangerous on the counter attack every time they broke forward and won a series of corners around the hour mark.
From one of the corners, the ball broke on the right side of the box and an uncertain touch from the defender allowed Blair to touch the ball away and be crudely fouled.
The referee played a good advantage though as the ball flew across the goal mouth and there was the ever present MacDougall to notch his and Tarbert’s 4th goal of the match.
The rest of the game was played in a similar vein with Duncanrig pressing to get back into it and Tarbert hitting on the counter attack.
Very few chances were allowed to the away side but they did pull one back late on as a lucky ricochet fell to their striker to tap in at the back post.
This proved no more than a consolation though as Tarbert saw the game out to win 4-2 and climb two places in the league table.
Tomorrow Tarbert play Paisley who sit above them in the table and have only lost three times this season.
A tough match awaits but Tarbert will be looking to continue to build the momentum gained in the past few weeks.
Nikki MacDougall scored all four goals. Here he is in action earlier this season. 25_c29carradale03_Nikki_MacDougall