MATCH REPORT: BEITH 7-1 ARTHURLIE
Beith 7-1 Arthurlie
By Ross Lafferty
WoSFL Premier Division
14:00 Saturday 1 April 2023
Bellsdale Park, Beith
Beith: Frize (20), Monk (30, 47), Rossiter (31), Fowler (40), McGlinchey (50), Bradley O.G. (63)
Arthurlie: Simeon (32)
COLIN Reilly’s Arthurlie side were given a sharp wake-up call in Saturday’s trip to North Ayrshire, as champions-elect Beith put them to the sword at Bellsdale Park.
Following two wins in as many games under the new manager, the Barrhead side were brought back to earth with quite the bump, Chris Strain’s table-toppers proving a class apart with their ruthlessness in front of goal.
The home side didn’t have to wait long for their first opportunity, danger man Josh Fowler winning a free-kick on the edge of the box. Conner McGlinchey and Blair Rossiter both lurked over the set piece but it was the latter who was to step forward, sending the ball harmlessly over with his left foot.
Arthurlie were inches away from taking the lead on 9 minutes, Owen Stott in the Beith goal was caught underneath an inswinging corner and the ball fell to Gary Smith who crashed a shot off the underside of the crossbar.
On 15 minutes, Fowler was again at the heart of the home team’s threat, racing on to a ball over the top but seeing James Scott race quickly off his line to smother his attempted lob.
Five minutes later Fowler did have more luck, however, latching on to a short Lee Roulston pass back before rounding Scott and setting up captain Paul Frize to make it 1-0.
Fowler nearly doubled the lead on 24 minutes, running direct at the heart of the ‘Lie defence before hitting a powerful left-footed effort that Scott did well to keep hold of.
It was proving an entertaining game and the visitors almost grabbed an equaliser with their next attack, Stott getting across his goal well to parry Smith’s 25-yard free-kick away from goal.
The home side did manage to double the lead on the half-hour mark, Andy Monk managing to drift into the Arthurlie box unnoticed before receiving a pass and dispatching the ball into the the bottom left corner.
Just a minute later, Rossiter made it 3-0, taking advantage of a misjudgement by Scott to slot into an unguarded net.
The action was constant and within another 60 seconds it was 3-1, Arthurlie’s Dale Simeon smashing a left-foot volley home from 12 yards.
With 5 minutes to go before the break Beith made it 4, Fowler rolling a Steven Noble through ball past Scott into the net.
As the half-time whistle approached, the Barrhead men again threatened, Ryan McGregor heading narrowly wide from a Kinlay Bilham corner.
Just 2 minutes after the restart Beith added a fifth, Monk picking up a loose ball 16 yards out and sending a bobbling shot into the far corner.
A sixth was added just 3 minutes later, McGlinchey scoring with a free-kick from the left after Fowler had been cynically fouled by McGregor.
With an hour on the clock Arthurlie threatened for the first time in the second half, Andy McLaughlin running on to a great pass from substitute Max Kerr but slicing his shot well wide.
It was only a temporary respite for the visitors as Beith went immediately up the park and claimed another, Connor Bradley turning a Rossiter cross from the left into his own goal.
McGregor came close to claiming a second for Arthurlie on 68 with a dipping volley from a tight angle but saw Danny O’Neill brilliantly clear over the bar with a header.
The match had long since started to peter out when Roulston and Carroll both had efforts from outside the box in the last four minutes, a string of substitutions interrupting the flow of the game and the home side perhaps content to save their efforts for the title run-in that awaits them.
Beith team: Stott, McGlinchey, Noble, Rough, O’Neill, Langan (Scullion 72), Monti (Barclay 63), Frize (c) (Watt 72), Fowler (Docherty 77), Rossiter, Monk
Subs not used: Burns, Hughes, McKinven
Arthurlie team: Scott; McGregor, Magee, Bradley; Roulston, Leyden, Simeon (MacNeil 63), McLaughlin, Bilham (Kerr 60); Smith (Warnock 77), Carroll (c)
Subs not used: Nolan, Jeanes, McLachlan, Black (GK)