Basic errors and missed tackles essentially led to Gala’s fifth Premiership defeat on the bounce down at Netherdale this afternoon.
Despite showing strength going forward and levelling the scores going into the closing quarter the Maroons let the win, and a losing bonus point slip through their fingers in the closing minutes of the game of the game.
The home crowd had reason to be optimistic in the opening stages as their team caught Stirling sleeping and, from a scrum five, Matt Carryer bulldozed his way over for the first try of the game, Craig Dods slotting the conversion.
The rude awakening only riled the visitors who took control for the ensuing 30 minutes. Danny Gilmour (2) and Jonny Hope ran in tries during this period, the only saving grace for Gala being that Hope appeared to have left his kicking boots at Bridgehaugh.
So, when Luke Pettie rumbled over for Gala’s second try, again due to the hard work of the home pack, he closed the gap to a mere three points.
There was still time for one more from Stirling before the break however. Sam Johnson nipping over in the corner for an unconverted bonus point try. Half-time: Gala 12 Stirling County 20.
After the restart it looked as if it would be more of the same with the Gala still struggling to deal with the pace of their visitors. But a quick tap and go from just inside the Stirling half saw George Graham give the Bridgehaugh men a taste of their own medicine, leaving them standing as he flew up the pitch with Graham Speirs in support to take the pass and score. Dods missed the conversion but his sweetly struck drop goal 10 minutes later drew the home side level.
And so it stayed for the next 12 minutes as a spell of stalemate took place in midfield.
Once again though it was the Stirling pace that broke the deadlock, Shaun Treweek dancing through the Gala defence to score at the posts and convert himself. and, to add insult to injury, the same man deprived Gala of a losing bonus point when kicking a penalty goal right on full time.
Gala: C. Dods; G. Speirs, D. Burrows, R. Jeffrey, F. Robson; R. Howarth, G. Graham; L. pettie, M. Carryer, C. Keen, C. Rowlandson, O. Palepoi, R. Louw, G. Adams, E. Dods. Subs: R. Tod, S. Cairns, j. Irvine, A. Emond, K. Young.