Oyenuga (41), Orr (53) – Kassarate (49)
Morton Under-20s responded to last week’s shock 4-0 loss away at Albion Rovers with a 2-1 win over Stranraer at Cappielow last night.
Manager Andy Millen was left fuming by the manner of his side’s first defeat of the Development League West campaign and made three changes to the team that lost at Cliftonhill.
Two of these were enforced, however, with 17-year-old goalkeeper Greig Connor making his second-string debut in place of the injured Jamie McGowan and Jack Purdue coming for the suspended Alex McWaters.
Thomas Orr also came in up top as part of a reshuffle that saw Kudus Oyenuga move to left midfield, Purdue play in the centre while David Anderson moved to right-back with Mitchell Duffy dropping out.
The Ton kids seemed to be suffering a hangover from last Wednesday’s loss and made a sluggish start in which only a point-blank save from shot-stopper Connor prevented Mark McGuigan from opening the scoring.
Blues forward Evan Maley has continued to impress in Under-20s matches this term and he crashed a stunning volley off the top off the crossbar after catching the ball flush with his laces.
The woodwork then came to the visitors’ rescue when defender John Mitchell dived to meet a Jon Scullion free-kick from the right with a header that spun up and somehow stayed out after clipping the underside of the bar.
After that frantic early opening quarter hour, chances were few and far between until Oyenuga struck to fire the hosts into the lead in the 41st minute after Orr’s low cross from the right was deflected into his path.
Stranraer included new loan signing from Dumbarton Amadou Kassarate in their starting line-up, and the Senegalese striker levelled things up four minutes into the second half by bundling into the net from close range.
Parity would last just four minutes, however, as home hitman Orr followed up to nod into the gaping net after Scullion’s initial header from a Scott Tiffoney cross was tipped up onto the face of the bar by Max Currie.
Tiffoney and Ruaridh Langan both manufactured reasonable goalscoring opportunities with similarly strong driving runs into the opposition box in the final half hour but could not find the net.
However, the two goals proved enough to maintain the development squad’s 100 per cent home record as well keeping them within a point of league leaders Queen of the South after they bested Albion Rovers in Dumfries.
2. Anderson 5. Mitchell 4. Hynes 3. Strapp
10. Tiffoney 8. Langan (c) 6. Purdue 7. Oyenuga
11. Scullion 9. Orr
Subs used: 14. Docherty (for Orr, 77), 12. Eardley (for Scullion, 84), and 15. Armour (for Oyenuga, 87).
Subs not used: 16. Miller, 17. Duffy.
Images: Gary Bradley