Scorer: Turner (66)

dumbarton 20181222 001

A SECOND half strike from Kyle Turner gave Stranraer all three points and continued the club’s fine recent run at Dumbarton.

The Blues have lost just once when visiting the Sons since 2003 and stretched that run despite missing Adam Cummins and David Brownlie through suspension and Luke Donnelly through injury.

Stevie Farrell made four changes, with Daniel Higgins, Chris McGowan, Grant Anderson and Innes Cameron coming in for Cummins, Brownlie, Donnelly and Ian Smith.

dumbarton 20181222 009

It was a scrappy game and not one that was blessed with clear cut chances.

However, Stranraer can still feel more than happy with their day’s work, which sees them one point off the play-offs at Christmas and with a game in hand.

Anderson had the ball in the net after seven minutes after a long ball up the park but the offside flag had already been raised.

Moments later and PJ Crossan saw his shot deflected over the bar and, from the resultant corner, Cameron could not quite get the ball from under his feet to get a real shot on goal.

That’s not to say it was one-way traffic though, with Dom Thomas shooting wide before he turned provider.

dumbarton 20181222 005

He produced a teasing cross with Callum Gallagher sneaking in at the back post.

Fortunately, the frontman could not keep his effort down and fired well over the bar before Bobby Barr smashed a low shot against Max Currie’s legs.

If Dumbarton had played their way into the first half, Stranraer fought back after the break.

Turner had been impressive on the ball in the first half and again took the fight to the hosts.

dumbarton 20181222 006

Seven minutes after the restart, he surged through the defence and saw his shot saved by Chris Smith in the home goal.

That was simply a taste of what was to come though when Turner again picked up the ball and, with the Dumbarton defence backing off, he curled home his fourth of the season from outside the box.

dumbarton 20181222 011

It was a goal which, understandably, sparked Jim Duffy’s men into life.

They attempted to get back in it and had plenty of the ball but Stranraer’s reshuffled defence held firm.

Andy McDonald put a diving header over his own bar in cutting out a chance with Gallagher waiting and that typified the defensive qualities of the team as they put themselves in the way of everything heading towards goal.

When Dumbarton did find a way beyond the defence, Currie was on hand to make the save and see Stranraer over the line for three points.

dumbarton 20181222 012

It was also Dumbarton's first defeat at home since Duffy took charge.

Attention now turns to a trip to Airdrie, who sit above Stranraer on goals scored, for the final tie of 2018.

Dumbarton: C Smith, Ballantyne, Dyer (Allardice 85), Dowie, Hutton, Carswell, Forbes, Barr (Thomson 88), Gallagher, Paton (Spencer 77), Thomas.
Not used: McGowan.

Stranraer: Currie, Higgins, McGowan, McDonald, Hamill, McManus, Turner, Anderson (Diver 88), Cameron, Lamont, Crossan (I Smith 83).
Not used: D Smith, Ashmore and Avci.

Referee: John McKendrick
Attendance: 686
HT: 0-0

SPFL 3L1 6474

1 Raith Rovers 28 53
2 Falkirk 28 52
3 Airdrieonians 28 48
4 Montrose 28 47
5 East Fife 28 45
6 Dumbarton 28 38
7 Clyde 28 34
8 Peterhead 27 26
9 Forfar Athletic 28 24
10 Stranraer 27 16