Apr 18 2012 by Colin Paterson, Airdrie & Coatbridge
IRN-BRU SECOND DIVISION:
EAST FIFE 1
ALBION ROVERS 2
SCOTT CHAPLAIN says he was relieved to end a five-month goal drought to help Albion Rovers extend their timely unbeaten run.
The 28-year-old midfielder got on the scoresheet for the first time since November after opening the scoring at New Bayview on Saturday.
John Gemmell doubled the lead before the break with Rovers holding on for a first win at New Bayview since April 2007 after substitute David Muir pulled a goal back.
On-loan Rangers kid Jack Werndly was red-carded at the death for Rovers – but nothing was going to take the shine off the day for Chaplain.
“It’s been a long time coming but I was delighted to get a goal in what was a great win for us,” he said.
“The last few weeks have been difficult as I have been in and out of the side. It’s been hard to find a good rhythm.
“But football is a team game. You just have to go with the decisions made and take your opportunity when you get it.”
The betting money was on the home side maintaining their promotion play-off push but Chaplain was convinced Rovers would upset the apple cart.
“We knew it would be a tough game up there and not many people would have fancied us to pick up the three points,” he added.
“But we’ve been on a good run of form and that has improved everyone’s confidence. We played well and then killed the game when we needed to.”
Rovers have now taken 10 points from a possible 12 against sides in the top six over the last four weeks and Chaplain says that proves how tight the Irn-Bru Second Division is.
“There are a lot of surprising results at this stage of the season,” he acknowledged. “It’s a funny one and I think a lot of it boils down to who you are playing.
“The points might indicate there are gaps between the teams but there isn’t much between any of us. On your day, you can beat anyone.
“We’re not where we want to be but we are enjoying this season. It’s great to be playing at this level against better teams.”
Rovers are five points clear of rock-bottom Stirling Albion with only three matches left to play.
Two of those fixtures are against the Binos and Forfar Athletic, who are in eighth place ahead of the Coatbridge men on goal difference.
“I think it will now come down to the last two games,” Chaplain commented. “The three of us have been competing at the bottom for a few weeks now.
“We will focus on ourselves and not worry about Forfar and Stirling although those games will be like cup finals.”
East Fife: Brown; McCormack, Ovenstone, Campbell, Durie; Janczyk (Johnstone 57); Linn (Hislop 73), Smith, Sloan (Muir 57); Dalziel, Wallace.
Subs not used: McQuade, Collier(gk).
Albion Rovers: Gaston; Reid, O’Byrne, Marriott, Russell; Stevenson, McStay; Love (Boyle 67), Chaplain (Gilmartin 83), Werndly; Gemmell.
Subs not used: Acquah, Lumsden, Fahey(gk).
Booked: Reid, Russell, Werndly, Gemmell.
Referee: Gary Hilland.