Four days after crashing 7-1 at home to the same opponents, Berwick Rangers turned the tables on the team second from the top of the Development League East with this deserved victory at the Indodrill Stadium. Berwick were able to field a more balanced team than in the previous encounter being bolstered by still retained first teamers Kerr Young and Jonny Fairbairn plus manager Colin Cameron.
Scott Hynd, who scored a hat trick last time, put Alloa in front around 17minutes after controlling a fine, long cross from the right by Paul Carrick. But this time, the floodgates didn’t open. Although Lee McLelland threatened more danger when he teed up his shot before blasting it over the bar, Berwick began to create the more likely chances.
Daniel Watt, Charlie Denton and Zak Khouiel linked up, the move ending with Blair Springhall firing over from 16 yards. Only two more minutes passed before Watt narrowly headed Denton’s 26th min. corner wide.
The equaliser arrived in the 35th minute after a midfield lob from Cameron. Watt took advantage on being given a second chance when the home defence failed to deal with it and brought his tally to five goals in Rangers’ last three games.
Loick Mangala showed he could motor with a storming run down the left touchline but Springhall couldn’t get on the end of his cross. Fairbairn headed a Denton corner a foot over the bar and Denton made 30 yards on a solo run stopped only when keeper Jamie Brown saved at his feet.
Hynd stayed off after the break, troubled by an ankle injury and was replaced by Russell McLean who had also caused Berwick problems a few nights back. He quickly tested Nils Bleakley in the Berwick goal. However, the relatively even first half was not repeated as the visitors went on to completely dominate the second period. On the few
occasions Alloa looked anything like posing a threat, Fairbairn was there to sweep up at the back.
Berwick had numerous chances. Twice Khouiel ended moves in identical fashion by sending the ball beyond the far post. A lack of composure resulted in Springhall powering the ball too high after Watt and Denton carved out an opening. Brown got down again, this time to stop Watt’s progress when the striker looked good for a second goal and Young headed another corner over the top.
Berwick finally got their reward with six minutes remaining. Sub Scott Russell made ground down the left. Watt acted as link man, passing to Khouiel for whom it was third time lucky, his strike from ten yards bouncing off Brown’s body on its way in.
Berwick Rangers: Bleakley, Hall*,Watson, Fairbairn ( capt. ), Young, Cameron, Denton*, Springhall*, Watt*, Khouiel, Mangala ( S.Russell* 63 )
*Denotes trialist