Late strike earns Loons point at Ayr United

Photo - Chris Coutts.
Photo - Chris Coutts.

Ayr united 2 forfar athletic 2

Despite taking the lead through loanee Lewis Allan, the Loons grabbed a point in the final minute after Travis bundled home a Campbell corner with Craig Moore and Alan Forrest the Ayr scorers at Somerset Park.

Travis said: “Iain Campbell’s put in a great ball and it’s dropped to me, I just chucked my knees at it and I think it took a deflection before it went in but I’ll take that all day long, I don’t score many.

“We didn’t play as well as we can but it’s hard when you play a midweek game and with the heat today; Ayr played well but we’ll take the point away from home and build on it. The unbeaten run’s still there as well which is the main thing.”

The popular defender was delighted to get his chance to start after struggling to displace Thomas O’Brien and Kevin Nicoll.

Nicoll was suspended for this game while O’Brien is injured so Travis and Michael Dunlop were drafted into the centre of defence.

“Both O’Brien and Nicoll have come in and done a great job,” he said. “Pbviously we’ve been unbeaten so they’ve been playing really well and the back four as a whole have been good so I’ve had to wait for my chance but hopefully now because I’ve had my shot, I can build on it and keep it and get back to where I was last season.”

Forfar made two changes to the side that took Hearts to extra time in midweek with Allan replacing Martyn Fotheringham while new signing Andrew Black, on loan until January from Dundee, replaced the suspended Nicoll.

Ayr had the first chances of the game, with Jordan Preston nodding over from a Brian Gilmour cross in the seventh minute.

In the 18th minute Moore was the next to go close, flicking the ball wide after Nicky Devlin made his way into the box to set him up.

Chris Templeman had Forfar’s first effort on goal but could only fire low at the keeper before the Loons, backed by a noisy away support, took the lead in the 26th minute.

Ayr were passing the ball around the back without much pressure until Robbie Crawford sent a pass directly into Allan who capitalised by advancing on goal and slotting home for his first ever senior goal.

Kerr Hay could have doubled the advantage four minutes later when he collected a Campbell cross but Greg Fleming was there to push away his shot from a tight angle.

Ayr equalised on the stroke of half time when a long ball found Forrest and he flicked it towards Moore who hit his shot first time, the effort curling into the bottom corner past Douglas.

Forrest hit the sidenetting for the home side in the 51st minute while Dunlop nodded a corner wide for the visitors.

The Ayr attacker gave them the lead after 57 minutes, this time Moore becoming provider; the shot looked tame and everyone in the ground thought Douglas had it covered only for the ball to squirm under the big keeper and in.

The Loons hunted for an equaliser and almost got one through Bryan Hodge nine minutes after going behind, a corner falling to the confident midfielder but his 25 yard effort flew just over the bar.

The game looked to be winding down in the final 20 minutes, with only Preston having any chances on goal for either side, both times missing the target.

In injury time Forfar won a corner, again Campbell swung it into the box and Travis was on hand to bundle the ball home via a deflection, his second of the season.

The result keeps Forfar on top of the league and extends their unbeaten league run to four out of four this season.

Ayr United: Fleming, Devlin, Boyle, Adams, Graham, Murphy, Gilmour, Crawford, Preston, Moore, Forrest (Donald 63)

Forfar Athletic: Douglas, Black, Campbell, Dunlop, Travis, Young (Fotheringham 77), Hay (Malin 77), Hodge, Templeman (Smith 62), Allan, Denholm