Thursday 18th June 2020

WE continue our countdown of the 100 greatest games at what is currently the C&G Systems Stadium, with the top 40 now within sight.

Supporters Fraser Clarke, Andy Galloway, Graeme Robertson and Jack Crawford have worked to compile the series, with the final rankings determined by average individual placings among the four.

Today we feature games against Alloa Athletic (twice), Brechin City, Connah’s Quay Nomads and Airdrie.

Numbers 40 to 36 will be published on Saturday at 10am.

45. Dumbarton 3-1 Alloa Athletic – Saturday, May 15, 2004

In the last instalment of this series, it was remarked that season 2004/05 “didn’t hit the heights of the last one.”

This was why. Dumbarton, incredible as it sounded, had a chance of promotion into the First Division going into the final day of the season, pending this game and results elsewhere.

In the first half, the dream unfortunately faded into almost oblivion. It wasn’t so much that Jamie McGowan’s 39th minute goal had Alloa ahead at half time, it was more that Hamilton led 3-0 at Forfar in a game Sons needed them to lose.

While that result was never likely to be overturned, Dumbarton ended up doing their bit. As soon as Gordon Herd equalised midway through the second half, only one team was going to win.

Six minutes later Bjorn Skjelbred had his first and only goal for the club, and with four minutes remaining John Dillon made it 3-1.

Hamilton ran in a fourth at Station Park to clinch their promotion, but although Sons could not celebrate a place in the First Division, they could celebrate a fine season where they surpassed expectations.

44. Dumbarton 3-2 Alloa Athletic – Saturday, April 2, 2005

Alloa again, less than a year later. Season 2004/05 may not have matched its predecessor but it had its highlights, like this one.

After three defeats out of three to the Wasps this season, Dumbarton were behind to them again inside one minute, Graeme Brown opening the scoring.

But with 11 minutes left of the first half, Iain Russell got the equaliser on what was to be a fine afternoon for the striker.

He had his second goal on 58 minutes, but with the lead in a precarious position, Ross Hamilton got the visitors level with 13 minutes left.

Time was running out, but on 87 minutes an inexplicable handball in the area by an Alloa defender was punished.

Russell saw his penalty saved, but was first to the rebound and stuck it in the net for his hat-trick and a priceless victory.

43. Dumbarton 2-1 Brechin City – Wednesday, February 27, 2002

Another victory from behind against a team who went into the match with a 100 per cent record against Dumbarton to date.

Brechin, twice victorious over Sons so far in this campaign, were ahead in this game after 29 minutes, Kevin Fotheringham drilling home a free kick.

With Paddy Flannery suspended, Dumbarton had to think of another way past the leaders’ defence, and a fine second half display won the match in real style.

Eight minutes after the restart, Andy Brown got the equaliser before a moment of sheer magic from Mark Crilly proved to be the winner.

On 61 minutes, he got away from the Brechin defence and finished expertly – no need for a free kick from him this time.

Our fourth home win in five as part of the push for promotion.

42. Dumbarton 2-1 Connah’s Quay Nomads – Saturday, September 2, 2017

A frustrating afternoon – but late drama is always welcome whatever has happened before it.

After 26 minutes Dumbarton were behind to their visitors from Wales after a careless challenge in the area was punished by the award of a penalty, converted by Calum Morris.

The visitors were dominant and some inspiration was needed by Sons. It nearly arrived with an overhead kick by Christian Nade, but the keeper pushed his effort over.

With nine minutes left, though, the equaliser arrived, David Wilson firing home what proved to be his only goal for the club through a crowd of defenders.

That led to extra time, but in the 120th minute, visiting defender George Horan fouled Nade 20 yards out to get his second booking of the match.

The agony wasn’t over for the visitors, though, as Dimitris Froxylias scored from a free kick against Welsh Premier League opposition to win it for Dumbarton. Not the only time we said that in this campaign.

Copyright Fullarton Photos 2017

41. Dumbarton 2-1 Airdrie – Wednesday, January 1, 2003

To date, the only time we have played at the stadium on New Year’s Day. It was inspired by a player who we had previously seen in a Cowdenbeath shirt 32 days before.

Emeka Obidile played as a trialist for the Blue Brazil against Dumbarton in a 1-1 draw, but a deal with the Central Park outfit could not be agreed.

That was to Sons’ profit, and it took the Nigerian only 18 minutes in black and gold to get himself touted for a deal at the Rock.

As soon as he took possession near the halfway line, his pace was too much for the Airdrie defence, and he ran in to finish clinically.

Not satisfied with that, he repeated the trick two minutes from half time, only this time the result of his run was a low ball which was finished by John Dillon.

Jerome Vareille got one back for Airdrie with the final kick of the game, but Sons fans had a new favourite.

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