Young Queens Side Edge Out Penrith 4-3

It was a very young Queens side who made the journey to Penrith for the final pre-season friendly following the game at Annan the previous evening. Jim Atkinson and Scott Hooper, at 21, were the veterans of the side which included a 17 year old in the starting eleven and two 16 year olds on the bench.

A low key first half gave little indication of what was to come but the home side led 1-0 at the interval after breaking the deadlock when a loose ball was blasted home from 12 yards following a corner kick midway through. Just before the interval, Ross Fergusson picked up a minor injury which was to have a major effect on the game as he was replaced for the second half by u20's striker Jay McInally.

The second period was only two minutes old when McInally drew Queens level with a "worldy". Gaining possession down the left channel he made good ground to the bye-line and then, with everyone expecting a cut-back, smashed the ball high across the goalkeeper into the top corner from an almost impossible angle!

On the hour mark Penrith took the lead again when a high and fairly aimless bouncing ball into the box was missed by everyone and somehow managed to bounce its way directly into the far corner of the net. It was a clumsy goal to lose but kicked off a crazy five minutes or so which saw another three goals. First Owen Moxon's excellent free kick delivery to the back post saw Bob Murray climb highest to head another equaliser via the goalpost, and then a careless loss of possession in defence saw the home side break forward 5 against 3 and capitalise on their extra numbers to tap home from close range. On 66 minutes we were all square again though at 3-3 as Jay McInally seized on a through ball down the right side of the penalty area this time and hammered the ball past the goalkeeper again from 10 yards or so.

A succession of subs made the side even younger but it looked like there would be no further scoring until, in the 90th minute, Owen Bell's pass sent that man McInally bursting into the box again. A desperate defensive challenge brought his run to an end but at the cost of a penalty kick! Unfortunately, though there was clearly no malice in the tackle, Jay's foot had been planted and he was badly hurt in the process. There was a long delay while he was treated and stretchered from the field. He later attended Carlisle Hospital but the good news was the early indications are that nothing was broken. Back on the pitch meantime, after the delay the penalty seemed almost an irrelevance but it was still to be taken and Owen Bell stepped up to do the honours. His kick was blocked by the goalkeeper but the rebound fell straight back to him to knock into the net and clinch the win. The final whistle blew as soon as play was re-started.

For our image gallery for the match click here.

That completes the pre-season fixtures and competitive action begins on Saturday when we are away to Queen's Park in the Betfred Cup. Please remember that the match has been moved to Airdrie due to problems with the playing surface at Hampden.

Team v Penrith:
1 J Atkinson, 2 J Brannan, 3 R Evans (S Glean 69), 4 O Bell, 5 R Murray, 6 S Hooper (J Thompson 69), 7 C Murray (R Miller 15), 8 O Moxon (A Uphill 67), 9 R Fergusson (J McInally 45), 10 A Smith (R Hogg 65), 11 R Nelson
Unused Sub: C Copland (GK)