After a good summer and pre-season programme the Reivers felt they were in good shape, however a raft of call offs and player unavailability left Captain Graham Lofthouse with the bare minimum to make the journey with.
The game saw debuts handed to talented youngsters Paul Goldie and Toby Dawson.
The team also welcomed back prolific goal scorer Gareth Roberts from a spiritual sabbatical. Once the game got underway the Reivers quickly found their passing rhythm with Lofthouse and Jordan Sharp enjoying good possession in the midfield. The new centre back pairing of Marks Brebner and Scott looked assured throughout the opening exchanges, showing good pace to snuff out City’s direct approach.
The first chance fell to the home team with good work down the left wing allowing a man space on the back post for what looked like a tap in. A combination of a weak finish and good goalkeeping kept the scores level. City repeated the trick down the opposite flank, Scott Girvan losing his man on a run before the forward on the back post once again allowed goalkeeper Stephen Young to get a stick to the ball and clear the danger when scoring looked far simpler.
Reivers had their own attacks but with little chance to trouble the goal, two short corners were won and after one fluffed attempt Girvan got drag flick on target which was well saved by the keeper. So score, like the half time oranges, was neatly halved.
In the second period Reivers showed superior fitness and the pace of wingers Baird McIlwraith and Paul Goldie began to trouble the home defence, with Roberts continuing to sniff out chances. At this point Lofthouse decided that passing was becoming tiresome and set off on a mazy run from midfield, while initially looking like a headless chicken he made his way into the circle, rounded the keeper before firing into the roof of the net. This ruffled City but they could not get a foothold in the game. Tackles started to become more robust as frustration of losing out to younger opponents set in. Lofthouse attempted to meet fire with fire but all that was achieved was a two minute suspension in order to cool down. He was shortly followed by a city defender who, like an excited auctioneer could not stop talking, despite warnings from the umpire.
Reivers took advantage of the extra man, with good work from Callum Murray leading to his shot falling to McIlwraith for the simplest of tap ins. Murray shortly had the ball in the net once again but was deemed to use his feet in the lead up. At this point there was only going to be one winner with Reivers dominating the midfield and driving forward at every opportunity, Paul Goldie went close before being felled by the keeper before Murray met the same fate.
There was time however for one last attempt by City with a breakout through the heart of the visitors defence, Girvan again guilt of a laps in concentration, however the shot was well saved and cleared to safety.
After the game captain Lofthouse said: “We know City are a good physical team, so for our youngsters to stand up to them and come away with the win was very gratifying.
“I am very proud of all our players and we hope to keep improving as a team throughout the season.”
Man of the match was awarded to Toby Dawson, who showed remarkable composure and resilience throughout the game. Next up is a trip to Inverlieth next Saturday.
Team: Young, Girvan, Dawson, Brebner, Scott, McIlwraith, Lofthouse, Sharp, Goldie, Murray & Roberts.