Falkirk 1 Alloa 0: Loy secures win

03-01-2015. Picture Michael Gillen. FALKIRK. Falkirk Stadium. Falkirk FC v Alloa Athletic. Goal Rory Loy.
03-01-2015. Picture Michael Gillen. FALKIRK. Falkirk Stadium. Falkirk FC v Alloa Athletic. Goal Rory Loy.
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Falkirk started the year with three valuable points and cut the gap on next week’s opponents Hibs.

Rory Loy’s curling goal, when he took a Craig Sibbald pass on 16 yards and squeezed it into the corner of the net despite a palm of Craig McDowall, was enough for the Bairns.

The first half was a fairly even contest, but Falkirk edged it with a neat Rory Loy finish on 22 minutes.

However there was unusual goalkeepeing errors at both ends of the ground. First Craig McDowall, who had been on top form the last time the sides met at Recreation Park, collided with Botti Biabi a long way from his net and the rebound fell to Blair Alston but his 25 yard strike at goal sailed wide.

At the other side Jamie MacDonald tried a dribble out of his box but was robbed by Greig Spence. He passed sideways to Liam Buchanan but Peter Grant had retreated quickly and cleared the shot off the line of the unguarded net.

It was uncharacteristic for the usually dependable MacDonald but his afternoon ended prematurely when a collision with Buchanan caused a nasty injury to his nose and Graham Bowman was introduced on 38 minutes.

There was another change for the Bairns at half-time when botti Biabi came off and was replaced by Mark Kerr. That signalled a change of formation to a 3-4-2-1 line-up.

The formation resorted back to normal though but none of the changes, nor Scpott Shepherd replacing Tom Taiwo could ignite the second half.

Peter Grant’s powerful header pushed over by Craig McDowall and Greig Spence’s diving effort clutched by Graham Bowman were the two flashpoints in what was an altogether scrappy affair.

Alloa could have snatched a point at the death with a panic in the Falkirk boxz but Kieran Duffie cleared to ensure the points stayed at home.

The Bairns will be happier with the points rather than the performance specially as the three points narrow th egapm between Falkirk and next week’s opponents Hibs who drew 1-1 at Tynecastle.