RESERVES | Saints 1-1 Rangers

In a match with few chances Saints and Rangers cancelled each other out in the SPFL Reserve League match at McDiarmid Park earlier this afternoon.

Jamie McKenzie scored the opener for Saints but Glenn Middleton levelled the scores before half-time to secure a point for the visitors.

Blair Alston had the chance to win the match but missed a stoppage time penalty in a match which featured a number of senior players from both clubs.

Brian Easton started and played 45 minutes as the left-back continues his recovery from long-term injury.

Alan Maybury named an experienced side for Saints Reserves against Rangers including the likes of Cammy Bell, Brian Easton, Liam Gordon, Blair Alston, Michael O'Halloran and Danny Swanson.

The visitors also included several first-team squad players such as Glen Kamara, Glenn Middleton, Matthew Polster and Lassana Coulibaly.

It was a match with very few chances and it would take ten minutes before Saints would carve out a couple of decent opportunities.

Callum Hendry broke free in the Rangers half and drove in on goal but a heavy touch allowed the Rangers 'keeper Wright to slide out and collect the ball from the striker's feet.

Just after that Michael O'Halloran left the field with an injury and was replaced by Euan O'Reilly.

A minute later and Saints created another chance. Danny Swanson's inswinging free-kick from the left was met by the head of Liam Gordon but the 23-year-old couldn't keep his header down.

On 17 minutes Saints carved out another decent opportunity to open the scoring. It was Danny Swanson involved again and after some good work out on the left he laid the ball to Blair Alston just inside the area but the midfielder's effort was well saved by Wright.

It was after 26 minutes that Saints broke the deadlock in a goal that Rangers Reserves boss Graeme Murty is unlikely to want to see again.

Rangers 'keeper Kieran Wright's attempted clearance bounced off Daniel Finlayson’s back and right into the path of Jamie McKenzie and the youngster made no mistake from inside the area to put Alan Maybury's side in front.

Cammy Bell was barely tested in the opening 45 minutes however the away side would equalise just before the break with their first effort on target.

Glen Kamara slid a pass through the Saints defence to Glenn Middleton who fired the ball past Bell to send the sides in level at the interval.

The returning Brian Easton came off at the break and was replaced by Ciaran Brian in a second half which didn't provide much in the way of goalmouth action.

Goalscorer Jamie McKenzie came off after 66 minutes and was replaced by Shaun Struthers but the striker only lasted 7 minutes before picking up a knock and coming off for Cammy Ballantyne.

The best action of the second half came towards the end of the match. Stephen Kelly's free-kick was tipped over by Cammy Bell in the final minute of normal time but it would be Saints who would have the golden opportunity to snatch the win.

Danny Swanson's mazy run into the penalty area resulted in him being fouled in the box and the ref pointed to the spot without any hesitation.

It was Blair Alston who stepped up but his strike was saved by Kieran Wright meaning that the match ended all square at McDiarmid Park.

TEAM: Cammy Bell, Aaron Comrie, Brian Easton (Ciaran Brian 45), Liam Gordon, Niall Keown, Ali McCann (c), Blair Alston, Danny Swanson, Michael O'Halloran (Euan O'Reilly 10), Jamie McKenzie (Struthers 66 - Ballantyne 73), Callum Hendry.

UNUSED SUBS: Sinclair, Wilson, Quigley.

SCORER: Jamie McKenzie (26)

SCORERS: Struthers, Northcott.