Thursday 4th June 2020

GAMES number 85 to 81 are up today as we continue our countdown of the 100 greatest games played by Dumbarton at what is now the C&G Systems Stadium.

Our four-man panel of Fraser Clarke, Andy Galloway, Graeme Robertson and Jack Crawford have worked on this countdown in recent weeks, with final positions being decided by average individual rankings.

Today’s games are against Airdrie, Stranraer and Falkirk as well as a double header against Livingston.

Numbers 80 to 76 will be online on Saturday at 10am.

85. Dumbarton 2-1 Airdrie – Saturday, April 21, 2012

You may look at this result and think ‘really’? But while the result is the same, it’s not THAT game which took place a few weeks later and may feature later in this countdown.

This was three points that Dumbarton needed to get where they wanted to go in this season, and with only one win in eight, needed to bounce back.

After a goalless first half, they were behind 11 minutes into the second half, with Willie McLaren putting Airdrie in front.

Having won only one of the previous three games against the Diamonds in this season, Sons knew how deep they would have to dig.

Five minutes was all they were behind for when Bryan Prunty drew them level, and when Paul Lovering put through his own net on 67 minutes, it turned out he’d scored the winner.

Will that other 2-1 victory over Airdrie during this season feature somewhere in this series? Potentially.

84. Dumbarton 3-0 Stranraer – Saturday, November 23, 2002

Games against Stranraer hadn’t been a particular strength for Dumbarton. Eleven years had come and gone since they last beat them.

Which made this fine win with 10 men even more satisfying. We had the full compliment on the pitch when Paddy Flannery opened the scoring from the penalty spot on 29 minutes.

But a minute from half time, Mark Crilly got into a bit of a disagreement with a Stranraer player and was dismissed for violent conduct.

Stranraer rallied, but Sons held steady and when Gary McCutcheon ran in to slide home the second goal on 74 minutes, that was really it.

Except there was one final moment of positivity for the afternoon, when Steven Bonar put the third goal away with five minutes to go.

After 11 years waiting for a victory over the Blues, we may as well have done it in style.

Copyright Fullarton Photos 2014

83. Dumbarton 2-1 Falkirk – Saturday, February 15 2014

With Falkirk pushing at the sharp end of the Championship, Dumbarton’s first defeat of 2014 may have been predicted to come here.

Except it didn’t. Not even after Rory Loy had opened the scoring for the visitors on 29 minutes.

Having reached the quarter finals of the Scottish Cup the week before, by beating Alloa Athletic, Sons were in a good place.

And after 63 minutes they were level, when Mitch Megginson finished off Colin Nish’s cross.

Ten minutes after that came the goal that gave Sons their second win over the Bairns during this season – and kept them unbeaten, including the draw mentioned earlier in this countdown.

Jordan Kirkpatrick spun to shoot home from the edge of the area and Sons made even more of a statement than they already had during the calendar year.

82. Dumbarton 1-0 Livingston – Saturday, August 30, 2014

Played three, lost three, scored one under your own steam, conceded 11.

What do you do when that’s been how tough a start you’ve had to the season? Send for the striker who made his mark with you in the previous campaign.

The bad news was that Bryan Prunty left the club on the day of this match. The good was that it enabled Chris Kane to return on loan from St Johnstone.

And towards the end of this match, who else could have given it its defining moment?

With a minute left of a competitive, but not exactly chance-rich contest, Kane headed home a corner at the near post.

Not only was it our first victory of the season – it was our first at home against Livingston since February 1995, when they were Meadowbank Thistle.

Copyright Fullarton Photos 2014

81. Dumbarton 2-2 Livingston – Wednesday, February 5, 2014

We were saying about Chris Kane and Livingston…

After 65 minutes, this game was goalless. Referee Stevie O’Reilly had sent off Garry Fleming for two bookings, followed him down the tunnel with an injury, and that was really it.

That resulted in assistant referee Gavin Thomson taking over in the middle with a Livi supporter and qualified referee called upon to take up the flag.

Within a minute, Mr Thomson was awarding the first goal of the night to Keaghan Jacobs, but Colin Nish had Sons level on 72 minutes.

Andy Barrowman had Livi ahead again with 11 minutes to play, but in one final attack, the ball broke to Kane.

He did what he needed to do and Sons had their first point at home to Livi since…February 1995, when they were Meadowbank Thistle.

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