Gala Fairydean Rovers 1
Stirling University 4
Kevin Janiak reports from Netherdale
SLEEPY Gala took far too long to wake up in this Lowland League encounter, losing two sucker-punch goals in the first seven minutes.
The Netherdale men were far from sharp enough, but admittedly were struggling through injuries and players being forced to play out of position.
Owen Donaghue-Kelly nicked the ball 25 yards out and left Gala keeper John Dodds standing with his shot - with just 60 seconds on the clock.
Then Tomas Jones smacked in another from even further away.
Paul Jon Sludden added another for Stirling following a period of pressure from Gala, leaving the half-time score a slightly unlucky 3-0.
Stuart Noble got one back on the 69th minute with a free kick that was powered by sheer frustration, but five minutes from the end a Fraser Forrest back pass was intercepted by Sludden in an offside position, but his turning score stood.
Gala did have some good phases of play in the second half, but were unable to break down the Stirling defence in open play.
The two sides meet again next week in the South Challenge Cup.
Click on the video above to hear post-match comments from Gala boss Stevie Noble and Stirling manager Eddie May,
Read more on this match in Thursday’s Southern Reporter.