Saints 1-1 Ross County

Saints stretched their unbeaten record to five matches but will feel they should have taken all three points against Ross County this afternoon.

Despite enjoying the majority of the play and the better chances, Tommy Wright's men had to settle for a point thanks to a late Callum Hendry leveller at McDiarmid Park.


Having already met twice this season, Saints hoped that it would be third time lucky against Ross County and that they would see out 2019 with a victory against the Dingwall outfit.

The Staggies won in Perth back in July in the Betfred Cup while a Blair Spittal screamer denied Saints all three points up north.

And the home side started well dominating the early proceedings and forcing the visitors to concede possession at every turn.

Ali McCann was the first to have a chance for Saints but his goalbound effort was blocked on five minutes as the young midfielder tried to build on his winner in Hamilton last weekend.

The first attack from the visitors wouldn't come until the 20th minute when Ross Stewart tried his luck from distance but his shot was comfortably held by Zander Clark.

Nine minutes later and Stewart's day was over, the big striker going off injured and being replaced by former Saints striker Brian Graham.

County did have arguably the best chance of the first half when a cross into the box was misjudged by Jason Kerr allowing Brian Graham a great chance to open the scoring but the substitute was caught off guard and couldn't direct the ball on target.

Drey Wright and Anthony Ralston looked a constant threat down the right flank with fouls being committed all over the park by the visitors trying to disrupt Saints' rhythym.

Sean Kelly and Blair Spittal both went into the book before the break and Kennedy and Ralston shot off target for Saints who finished the half strongly without creating anything clear cut.

The home side came out the blocks well in the second half firstly through Ali McCann who - after a suoerb solo run - fired just wide of Baxter's post two minutes after the interval.

Four minutes later and, from a Saints free-kick, Jason Kerr headed a ball across the face of the County goal towards Kennedy who was caught underneath it and headed over from what looked like a certain goal.

Saints continued to push and Kane was causing havoc drawing another foul and a booking from Liam Fontaine.

Matty Kennedy took the resulting free-kick and his dipping effort just crept over the bar from the edge of the box.

On the hour mark it was Kennedy coming close yet again with his superb effort from 25-yards looking destined for the net only for Baxter to fingertip the ball onto the crossbar.

Having run himself into the ground for 65 minutes, Chris Kane made way for Callum Hendry as Saints went searching for the opener.

And two minutes later Callum Booth squared the ball to Kennedy in the box and with the goal at his mercy the winger didn't connect well with his shot and missed the opportunity to give his side the lead.

Brian Graham was booked for a foul on Liam Gordon during an aerial battle before five minutes later a sucker punch was landed.

Against the run of play, Billy McKay held the ball up just inside the Saints area before the incoming Iain Vigurs lashed a right-footed-effort off Zander Clark's post and into the back of the net.

While the goal came as a shock, Saints showed great character and continued pushing forward into the County half.

Stevie May and Michael O'Halloran entered the action as Tommy Wright went all out for an equaliser.

And he got his wish on 84 minutes.

A tremendous cross from Matty Kennedy found the head of substitute Callum Hendry who rose above the County defenders and guided his header into the corner of net leaving Baxter with no chance.

Once again Hendry came up with a vital goal from the bench and it spurred his side on to search for a winner.

Stevie May found himself almsot clear through but opted to shoot early and his effort was easily held by Baxter.

Then, in late drama, Baxter was booked for holding on to the ball to long in his box resulting in an in-direct free-kick for Saints inside the Ross County box.

Stevie May tried to take a quick free-kick and passed to Davidson who had an empty net to slot the ball into but referee Bobby Madden pulled it back to be retaken much to the players' disgust.

Nothing came of the retake but moments later Brian Graham was sent off for a second booking during another aerial challenge this time with Jason Kerr.

Time was running out for Saints and a couple of late deliveries into the box were dealt with by the visiting defence which meant the match finished 1-1 and Tommy Wright's men extended their unbeaten run to five matches.


SAINTS: Zander Clark, Anthony Ralston, Callum Booth, Liam Gordon, Jason Kerr, Ali McCann, Jason Holt (Stevie May 74), Murray Davidson, Drey Wright (Michael O'Halloran 83), Matty Kennedy, Chris Kane (Callum Hendry 65)

UNUSED SUBS: Elliott Parish, Wallace Duffy, Scott Tanser, Liam Craig

BOOKED: Holt, Davidson

SCORER: Hendry (84)


ROSS COUNTY: Nathan Baxter, Sean Kelly, Liam Fontaine (c), Callum Morris (Keith Watson 69), Billy McKay (Joe Chalmers 81), Iain Vigurs, Josh Mullin, Richard Foster, Blair Spittal, Harry Paton, Ross Stewart (Brian Graham 29)

UNUSED SUBS: Ross Laidlaw, Marcus Fraser, Lee Erwin, Ewan Henderson

BOOKED: Paton, Graham, Spittal, Kelly, Fontaine, Vigurs, Baxter

SENT OFF: Graham

SCORER: Vigurs