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Wasps put a sting in Ross County's title ambitions

By Will Clark

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Alloa Athletic 1

Ross County 0

Zanatta (33)

Dario Zanatta scored the only goal of the game as Ross County failed to extend their advantage at the top of the Championship.

But Queen of the South's 2-1 win at Dundee United means the Staggies stay top of the division by two points with two games in hand.

Ross County co-managers Steve Ferguson and Stuart Kettlewell.
Ross County co-managers Steve Ferguson and Stuart Kettlewell.

Ross County made three changes to the Irn-Bru Cup winning team from last weekend.

Scott Fox came back into goal to replace Ross Munro with Josh Mullin replacing Declan McManus and Lewis Spence came in for Ross Stewart.

Alloa had a great chance to take the lead early in the first half. Jon Robertson’s long ball found Jack Aitchison who beat the offside trap and charged towards goal.

But a last ditch tackle from Keith Watson prevented the forward getting a shot on target.

Alloa continued to be on top in the first quarter of the game when Aitchision was unchallenged in the box to connect with Dick's cross from the left wing. His shot from 12 yards was denied finding the bottom left corner of the net by an excellent Fox save.

Ross County responded when Jamie Lindsay’s shot from the edge of the box forced a fine save from Alloa goalkeeper Neil Parry.

In an end-to-end first half, Fox came to the rescue for Ross County as Andy Graham was unchallenged at six yards to nod Iain Flannigan's free kick towards goal but the goalkeeper tipped header over the bar.

But Alloa deservedly went in front in the 33rd minute when Zanatta was allowed to run straight through the heart of the County defence and from 12 yards fired a powerful shot past Fox in the right of the net.

Ross County attempted to find a leveller before half time when a cracking 30-yard shot from Michael Gardyne forced a fingertip save over the bar from Neil Parry. The resultant corner from Mullin found a header from Brian Graham that goes inches past the left hand post.

The Staggies shouted for a penalty before the hour mark when Mullin claimed he was fouled by Flannigan but was booked for a simulation.

Chances were few and far between until the last 10 minutes when Kenny van der Weg saw a shot cleared from danger by Dick.

Stewart came close to finding an equaliser when he latched on to a Mullin cross and turned his defender, but his shot from eight yards was well saved again by Parry.

Graham almost equalised in the dying minutes when he latched on to a long ball from midfeld and fired towards the bottom left corner but was denied by an excellent save by Parry.

Daniel Armstrong also saw a header in injury-time go inches over the bar in a disappointing defeat.

Alloa:Parry, Taggart, Dick, Graham, Hetherington, Robertson, Trouten (Kirkpatrick 82), Flannigan, Aitchison (Cawley 70), Zanatta, Shields (Hamilton 87).

Subs (Unused) Cawley, Hamilton, Brown, Kirkpatrick, Karadachki, Peggie, Henry.

Ross County: Fox, Fraser (Armstrong 78), Gardyne, Lindsay, Boyle, Mullin, Watson (Grivosti 63), Spence (Stewart 56), Graham, Cowie, Van der Weg.

Subs (Unused) Kelly, Draper, McManus, Munro.

Referee: Colin Steven

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