By Chris Toner
Albion Rovers picked up a big point away from home in their 1-1 draw against Annan Athletic at Galabank.
Callum Wilson’s equaliser just before half-time cancelled out Dominic Docherty’s opener for the home side. Neither side could break the deadlock in the second half leading to Brian Reid’s men, who were without captain Aron Lynas following his red card against Stirling Albion last week, to pick up the point.
The result sees Rovers still sitting at 7th in the cinch League Two table, but only three points and a goal difference of four outside of the promotion playoff spot currently occupied by Annan.
After Callum Wilson had an opening minute chance go wide, much of the first half belonged to the home side. Tommy Goss’ chance was spilled by Cammy Binnie, before holding onto Tony Wallace’s rebound. Aidan Smith later forced the keeper to gather his free kick.
The breakthrough for the Galabankies came in the 24th minute when Docherty fired Chris Johnston’s pass into the top right hand corner of the net.
Rovers would attempt to get back into the game through chances from Max Wright, David Wilson, Sean Fagan and Charlie Reilly, but none of them could seriously test keeper Greg Fleming.
Annan could have doubled their lead as Johnston rattled the post, with Smith being glad he was offside when he missed an open goal on the rebound.
Three minutes before half-time, Rovers equalised through Callum Wilson, capping off a fine first-half performance by firing home Reilly’s pass from close range.
Immediately after the restart, Johnston forced Binnie into making a save and Annan further threatened as Docherty and Goss both headed wide from terrific crosses from Charlie Barnes and Johnston respectively.
Rovers would then look threatening as Kyle Doherty had a chance from the edge of the box go wide, Jamie Leslie headed over from close range following a corner and the Annan defence had to clear what looked like a goal-bound ball off the line.
Binnie was later called into action by saving another Docherty header, before having to tip the ball over the bar following a dangerous bounce in front of goal after a long-range effort from Annan. However, the Rovers shot stopper redeemed himself from the ensuing corner with a brilliant one-handed save from Steven Swinglehurst’s header.
But it was Reilly who had two chances in the last ten minutes to grab all three points for Rovers, the first coming from a free kick Fleming had to get down low to save, with the second coming from a terrific turn on the left-hand side of the box, but the shot sailed wide of the post.