Match Report: Rangers B 3-1 Civil Service Strollers

RANGERS B got back to winning ways as they came out on top 3-1 against Civil Service Strollers in the Lowland League in Dumbarton this evening.

An Alex Lowry hat trick gave the Light Blues their first win of 2023 with a brilliant individual display on a night the home side had to play the majority of the contest with ten men.

His two first half goals put the home side in the ascendancy at the break and, after conceding at the start of the second period, the number seven rounded off the scoring by picking up the match ball right at the end as the hosts picked up the three points.

David McCallum made four changes to his side for the visit of Civil Service Strollers with Johnly Yfeko, Charlie McCann, as well as Alex Lowry and Leon King, coming into the team for their first home league outing of 2023.

The Light Blues looked to get back to winning ways in front of their home supporters and started in positive fashion, after dominating the ball in the opening stages, Robbie Fraser created the first opening with a dangerous delivery from the left-hand side as he looked for Ross McCausland inside the area, but his improvised close-range effort was diverted behind as the hosts looked to make their early spell of possession count.

Charlie McCann went closest to opening the scoring just after the 15th minute mark after some promising play through midfielder involving Alex Lowry, he fired a left-footed shot from just outside the area which was heading for the bottom corner but was beaten away well by the opposition shot stopper.

Robbie Ure thought he had broken the deadlock in the next phase of play, but saw his close-range finish ruled out for offside by the assistant referee on the far side.

Rangers took the lead on the 20th minute mark, Alex Lowry receiving the ball from his left back on the far side, cutting inside onto his right foot and curling an inch perfect effort on his right side into the far corner with the accuracy of the finish leaving the goalkeeper with no chance, with the hosts making the most of their promising start.

McCallum’s side were then reduced to ten men after Ross McCausland’s tackle was deemed to be out of control by referee Steven McDonald who gave him his marching orders to put a dampener on what had been a bright opening half hour for the Gers in Dumbarton.

The home side continued to see the majority of the ball and continued to play in a positive manner despite the man less, still creating openings and remaining comfortable a goal to the good as we headed towards the break.

Alex Lowry doubled his side’s advantage shortly after. Latching onto the loose ball in the final third, he carried the ball beyond the opposing backline and finished expertly across goal on his left side to double the Gers’ lead in the last action before the interval.

The visitors halved the deficit straight after the restart after Euan Valentine scored directly from a corner, using the wind to his advantage he curled the inswinger left footed, as it evaded everyone and found the far corner to give the away side hope of a comeback on the night.

Arron Lyall produced a great solo run and threaded a pass through to Ure after he evaded several challenges, but the striker was unable to divert the ball home after rounding the keeper from a tight angle.

Civil Service were starting to make use of their man advantage in spells of the second half, getting joy down the left-hand side but unable to trouble the Gers backline with their deliveries, with the home side still looking a threat themselves as they looked for the third goal which would give them breathing space in the contest again.

Valentine went close to his second for the away side which would have levelled up proceedings but his left footed shot inside the area flashed past the far post as we entered the final ten minutes on the night.

Lewis Budinauckas produced a fantastic save five minutes from time to stop what looked a guaranteed equaliser from close range, as he narrowed the angle brilliantly to make the stop with his right foot and keep his side in front as we headed towards stoppage time on the night.

Alex Lowry rounded off the evening by picking up the match ball, an expert right footed finish as he toed the ball into the far corner from inside the penalty area to put an end to any doubt of the outcome and cap off a brilliant individual evening for himself with his third of the night.

RANGERS B: Budinauckas, Harkness (Allan 69), King, Yfeko, Fraser, Rice (Lindsay, 45) McCann, Lyall, McCausland, Lowry, Ure (Graham 87)

Subs not used: Pazikas, MacKinnon, Strachan, Young

Civil Service Strollers: Whyte, Irving (Churchill 75), Shaw, Lawson (Young 60), Stanford, Kasa, Kennedy (Cunningham 45), Laird, Clark, Valentine, Badra Faye

Subs not used: Young, Moffat, Duffy, Ozturk, Camara Sylla

Referee: Steven McDonald

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