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Page last updated at 20:39 GMT, Tuesday, 6 April 2010 21:39 UK

Ross County 1-1 Queen of the South

By Charles Bannerman at Victoria Park

SFL

A last-minute deflected Andy Barrowman equaliser gave Ross County a deserved draw against 10-man Queens, but neither side looks likely to win promotion.

Jordan McMillan was sent off after 53 minutes following a second yellow card for fouls on Michael Gardyne.

Queens went ahead when substitute Sean O'Connor's mis-hit shot set up Paul Burns to score from eight yards.

County pounded the visitors' goal and in the final minute Barrowman grabbed a point and almost three in injury time.

The result leaves County 13 points adrift of leaders Caley Thistle while Queen of the South are three points further behind, although both teams have three games in hand.

The game was less than three minutes old when McMillan received his first yellow for a robust challenge on Gardyne.

County were soon on the attack when Barrowman, set up by Scott Morrison, sent a header just over the bar.

In response, Bob Harris blasted a 30-yard free-kick straight at Michael McGovern, who did well to stop it.

Soon the heroics were in the other goal. Scott Fox produced a wonderful save from Martin Scott's 25-yarder before Morrison sent a 20-yard free-kick inches over the bar.

Early in the second half Barrowman just missed with another header from Iain Vigurs' free-kick and then McMillan got his marching orders for a further offence against Gardyne.

Morrison's resulting long-range free-kick grazed the post.

Queen of the South's goal came in 64 minutes when substitute O'Connor, just 30 seconds on the pitch, followed up a strong run by Stewart Kean down the left with a mis-hit effort found Burns who finished from eight yards.

Burns might have made it 2-0 but his run was cut out by Alex Keddie.

County applied increasing pressure to the visitors' goal.

Scott and Barrowman both went close while Gardyne pulled another great save out of Fox.

In the dying seconds County grabbed their point when Barrowman got on the end of Garry Miller's cross and his effort found the net with the help of a deflection.

Two minutes into stoppage time County might have won it when Scott skied an effort from just a couple of yards.

County now prepare to take on Celtic in the Scottish Cup semi-final at Hampden on Saturday.


Ross County manager Derek Adams:
"We had a lot of pressure, a lot of the ball, a lot of opportunities with crosses into the box.

"We've got to give credit to Queen of the South, they defended well and they went a goal ahead.

"We were unfortunate not to win the game. I think that Scott Fox made a magnificent save at the end and it just wasn't going to be our night tonight.

"When you go a goal down and keep pushing on as we've done a number of times this season - that shows the character. We could have won the game and probably should have with the number of opportunities we created.

"I think Inverness Caley are going to win the league. Are Dundee going to come calling? You never know."

Queen of the South manager Kenny Brannigan:
"After we scored the goal, time wasn't going quick enough.

"Everybody worked their socks off, but what can I say?

"It was a strange night. I thought they dominated a lot of the play and the plan was to hold out and if you get a goal, especially if you're playing away from home, the other team's got to try to work you.

"I didn't think it was a red card, I just thought it was a poor sending off and I'm down to 10 men again.

"It's a hard shift to go and exploit their weaknesses when you're a man short and even though we were down to 10 men, they played the shape well. I think promotion is a tall order for both sides now."


Ross County: McGovern, Miller, Morrison, Boyd, Keddie, Brittain, Scott, Vigurs (Di Giacomo 71), Gardyne, Barrowman, Craig. Subs Not Used: Malin, Kettlewell, Stephen, Smith.

Booked: Keddie.

Goals: Boyd 90.

Queen of the South: Fox, McAusland, Reid, Harris, McMillan, Adams, McKenna, Quinn (Weatherston 71), Burns, McLaren (Kean 56), Holmes (O'Connor 63). Subs Not Used: Roy, Hamill.

Sent Off: McMillan (53).

Booked: McMillan, Adams.

Goals: Burns 64.

Attendance: 2,004

Referee: S McLean



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