Queen's Park 0 - 1 Peterhead
Another returning face was that of veteran forward Paul Ronald, who featured on the bench. Queen's started then with David Crawford in goals, a back four of Henry, Agostini, Brough and Douglas, a midfield of Cairney, Neill, Harkins and Dunlop and a forward line of Tony Quinn and Adam Coakley.
At a dreich and dull Hampden, The Blue Toon were the first to threaten and highly rated youngster Craig Gunn almost capatlized on an awful Henry back pass which left keeper Crawford scrambling to concede a throw in. There were worries about Tony Quinn's fitness when he was clattered by Michal Kula in the Peterhead goal at a high ball, but Quinno managed to run off the dead leg he appeared to suffer.
The visitors continued to threaten, and Martin Bavidge was unlucky to see his inviting cross not converted by Craig Gunn, after he brushed off Jack Henry with real ease. Our first corner came on 13 minutes, but Barry Douglas inswinger caused no problems for Peterhead's giant Polish 'keeper.
David Crawford was forced into his first real save on 16 minutes, keeping out Bavidge's strike after he broke past the sluggish looking defensive pairing of Agostini and Brough. Ross Dunlop won us a corner moments after, and this training ground effort almost resulted in Douglas getting a shot away from 25 yards, but he struggled to control an overhit looking ball from Paul Cairney.
A corner on 25 minutes caused real danger in the Queen's box and after Peterhead's players ping ponged the ball around the box for quite a substantial period of time, the ball eventually went behind for a goal kick. Harkins and Douglas linked up soon after as we got the ball away up the wing, but the young left back's cutback was ill advised, as both Coakley and Quinn sat in a decent, more advanced position. We created another half chance on 36 minutes, Adam Coakley's weighted cross to Cairney was poorly controlled by the on loan Thistle midfielder, and the attack eventually broke down.
The Blue Toon almost grabbed the lead on 44 minutes after Bavidge left Agostini on his backside but his cutback was diverted, narrowly, past the post by the stretching Jamie Brough. The resulting corner was punched clear by Crawford, and Bavidge lashed the resulting loose ball well over the Spiders crossbar.
Queen's were lucky to be level as we emerged for the second period, and almost instantly the visitors were again causing us problems. Bavidge firstly bent a free kick narrowly over the bar, before he skinned Douglas and forced a great save from Crawford. From the counter attack Coakley sent an inviting cross ball over the box to Tony Quinn, but the big man couldn't quite make it to the ball.
On 52 minutes, we created our best chance of the match. Douglas played a great ball into the feet of Quinn, the big man turned well but he found his sclaffed shot well blocked by the firm Peterhead defence. Peterhead were next to come close, a long throw was only half cleared by Agostini and Neil McVittie sent the shot back in at frightening pace. We were fortunate to see it just clear the crossbar.
We soon won a corner kick, but Agostini's attempt at a near post volley from Cairney's set piece never looked like threatening the Peterhead goalkeeper, or the defenders, and instead it trickled out for a goal kick. On 64 minutes, Crawford was forced to make another good save, to this time deny Anderson. It was now getting to a point where a Blue Toon goal seemed inevitable, and it came on 72 minutes.
Moments after Speirs replaced Coakley with Holms, Stuart McKay scampered up the right, left Agostini on his backside and sent a great low ball into the six yard box, Anderson was never going to miss, ramming it home from three yards. It was no less than the visitors deserved, and boss Speirs threw on both Dunn and Ronald for Neill and Henry as we looked to desperately salvage something.
Peterhead were still looking the most threatening, and it was baffling that they didn't score a few more, but Queen's did have one chance of their own, the disappointing Cairney forcing a save from Kula's legs. It was our first shot on target of the day, in the 90th minute, a statistic that sums up an awful performance.
QUEEN'S PARK: David Crawford, Jack Henry (Robert Dunn), Barry Douglas, Damiano Agostini, Jamie Brough, Paul Harkins, Ross Dunlop, John Neill (Paul Ronald), Tony Quinn, Paul Cairney, Adam Coakley (Ryan Holms)
SUBS NOT USED: Andy Boslem, Zander Cowie (g/k)
REFEREE: Colin Brown
MAN OF THE MATCH: David Crawford