Dumbarton Football Club - Sons of the Rock 1872

Dumbarton (0) v St Mirren (2)

Saturday 13th January 2018, Kick Off 3pm

Ladbrokes Championship

HALF time arrived with everything going to plan, and the feeling that it could once again be done.

Within 15 minutes of the restart, all that was done was Dumbarton's hope of beating St Mirren again.

The victory in Paisley in December, and the return of Iain Russell through the week, offered some measure of confidence to Sons ahead of the tall order of taking on the league leaders.

With the man of the moment stripped and ready to come on, his team trailed 1-0 to an early second half Cammy Smith goal.

But by the time he entered the action, Stephen McGinn had doubled the deficit. It was never recovered, and nor did it look like being.

An evenly-contested first 45 minutes, during which the two teams looked equally like scoring, had made way for a second half which resembled a training match for St Mirren.

And it once again ended Dumbarton 0. It was the fifth blank sheet in six games since the triumph across the Erskine Bridge.

There is a vital run of fixtures coming up against the rest of the Championship's bottom half. Sons don't need plaudits from those for fruitless performances. They need goals and they need wins.

After 11 minutes Smith played Lewis Morgan in at a narrow angle, but the visiting forward's effort was punched away by Scott Gallacher at close range.

Tom Walsh narrowly missed the target with a shot before Gavin Reilly's low drive went across goal and wide.

Christian Nade, and then Walsh again, had further chances for Dumbarton, but those were blasted over and saved by the keeper respectively.

Sons knew how hard it would be to maintain the resistance, but they were still in it as they emerged from the tunnel for a second time.

And then it unravelled. Two minutes after the restart Stelios Demetriou crossed into the area and Smith headed home from close range.

A second Buddies goal looked far more likely than an equaliser and after Morgan had a shot deflected past, Reilly miskicked in front of a gaping goal.

But on 58 minutes, Reilly's shot from a corner was blocked and fell to McGinn, who was making his 100th start for the club and marked it with a goal.

Only a fine save from Gallacher prevented Kyle Magennis' free kick from making it 3-0 with 20 minutes left.

Dumbarton were trying hard, continuing to battle and the white flag was firmly at the bottom of the pole. But nothing was happening.

It nearly did with eight minutes left, but the keeper saved from Walsh again, this time with a well-hit volleyed effort.

This game was never going to turn around at that stage, but chances like those have to go, and be created more often, in the games to come.

There is still plenty of football to be played, but once again Dumbarton were left in no doubt just how much they have to help themselves.

Dumbarton: S Gallacher; Smith, Dowie, Carswell, C Gallagher (Roy 58), Walsh, Hutton, Handling (Russell 58), Dick, Nade, Barr. Subs: Ewings; Wilson, Johnston, Hill. Booked: Walsh, Carswell, Dowie.

St Mirren: Samson; Demetriou, McGinn, Magennis, Morgan, C Smith (Sutton 86), Baird, McShane, Reilly (Mullen 60), Davis, L Smith. Subs: Stewart; Irvine, MacKenzie, Flanagan, Erhahon.

Referee: Gavin Duncan.

Andy Galloway