Your online local sport by Millar Stoddart

Lanark United rescue a point against in-form Gartcairn

United have taken nine points from their first seven games

Lanark United grabbed a last-minute equaliser for the second week in a row after Peter O’Donnell’s late goal secured a 3-3 draw against Gartcairn at Moor Park last Saturday.

Ryan Donnelly fired the visitors ahead from the penalty spot but Shaun Gallagher replied with a penalty of his own soon after.

Jack Stubbs put Lanark ahead with 15 minutes remaining but a quick double from Donnelly and Kevin Ross gave Gartcairn a slender advantage.

United were poised for a disappointing defeat but Peter O’Donnell evaded the Gartcairn defence in a crowded box to slot the ball home and ensure that both sides would share the spoils.

Lanark currently occupy eighth place in the Central District Second Division after seven games and will be hoping to kick on after a slow start to their campaign.

Gartcairn attacked immediately and were awarded a penalty when Stuart Annetts handled the ball inside the box.

Ryan Donnelly, a recent addition to the Gartcairn side and once on the radar of Wigan Athletic, continued his fine run of form by converting the spot kick to put his side ahead.

Lanark were not deterred and were awarded a penalty of their own soon after when Ronan Kearney was brought down inside the Gartcairn box.

Shaun Gallagher stepped up for the hosts and beat the keeper at his left post to level the scoreline.

Gallagher then set up Annetts with a teasing pass but his effort was wide of the target.

Gartcairn left back Murray Spooner sent over an inviting cross on 35 minutes but the ball was headed wide of the post, as the Lanark rearguard breathed a collective sigh of relief.

Lanark looked to take the lead after the break and a surging run from Kearney on the left flank resulted in a tempting low cross across the face of goal but nobody was able to get on the end of the ball.

United were rewarded for their persistence when Jack Stubbs collected the ball from a corner on the right and unleashed a powerful strike into the back of the net.

However Donnelly soon scored the equaliser – despite Lanark’s appeals for offside – with a composed finish.

Gartcairn sensed a chance to grab all three points and a dangerous free kick was met by the head of substitute Kevin Ross who put his side ahead.

Lanark could have capitulated but, to their credit, pressed forward and a whipped ball caused confusion in the Gartcairn box and Peter O’Donnell was the first to strike and prodded the ball into the net to rescue a point for United.