Brechin sealed their place in the fourth round of the Scottish Cup on Saturday with a comfortable three-nil victory over Dumbarton at Glebe Park (writes Steven Rae).
Goals from Molloy, King and an injury-time strike from McManus mean Brechin now progress to round four of the national tourney.
Both sides had chances early doors, with Nelson and Ewings brought into the action in the first five minutes.
Charlie King had the best chance of the match up to that point when, in the 11th minute, he took the ball past Ewings and tried to shoot across the goal, but couldn’t find the net, amidst claims from the home side that he had been impeded by the keeper.
Brechin were playing some good football in midfield and tackling hard, with Lister winning a lot in the air up-front, and King covering a lot of ground.
They were rewarded in the 26th minute when Lister flicked the ball on to McKenna, whose parried shot fell to Molloy, who drove the ball into the top left corner of the net for his first goal of the season.
Dumbarton had two chances just before half-time, but both McKinnon and Gilhaney saw their shots go over the bar.
The hard tackling continued into the second half, with Dumbarton remaining focused and not letting their heads go down.
Brady was having a strong performance in midfield for Brechin, and McLean was supporting the midfield and attack well from right-back.
Brechin came agonisingly close to doubling their lead twice in the space of a minute. Brady’s free-kick was met by Lister, whose looping header beat Ewings, only for Nugent to head off the line and out for a corner.
McKenna’s low corner was then met by Molloy on the volley, but Ewings pulled off an excellent save to tip the ball onto the bar, and the ball was eventually scrambled clear.
Dumbarton battled on and, in the 66th minute, Wallace struck a good drive from the edge of the box, which was tipped round the right-hand post by Nelson.
In the 70th minute Dumbarton brought on Walker and Ramage for Borris and Winters, while City switched Carcary for Molloy shortly after.
Brechin went 2-0 up in the 79th minute.
King received a throw-in on the left hand side, turned beautifully, beating the defender, and placed his shot coolly into the bottom right of the net from seven yards out.
Dumbarton made their final substitution in the 78th minute, bringing on Brannan for Creaney, and King was switched for McManus for the home side in the 80th minute.
McManus went clear through on goal in the 86th minute but his shot was stopped by the keeper’s legs, and fell to Lister, but the City striker couldn’t convert, putting the ball past the right-hand post from close range.
In the 90th minute, Dumbarton won a dramatic spot-kick, when McClune was penalised for a foul on Prunty.
Mark Gilhaney stepped up, but Nelson saved his kick, much to the delight of the home fans.
City rounded off a fine victory three minutes into injury time, Hodge winning the ball from a goal kick, and playing the ball over the defence to McManus, who fired the ball into the bottom left of the net with just 30 seconds left to play.
Brechin City - Nelson, McLean, McClune, Buist, Dunlop, Brady, McKenna, Molloy (Carcary), Lister, King (McManus) and Hodge.
Dumbarton - Ewings, Nugent, Creaney (Brannan), Lithgow, McNiff, Borris (Walker), Gilhaney, Wallace, Prunty, McKinnon and Winters (Ramage).
Brechin manager Jim Weir said: “I’m delighted with the victory.
“The results are what are important in football, and thankfully I was happy with the performance as well.
“I’m delighted that we’ve managed to progress in the cup. With the disappointing results that we’ve had recently, there was a wee bit more pressure going into the game.
“One thing I always do is put myself under pressure to win games, and thankfully we came through that.
“I thought we showed a real appetite and a real self-belief.
“It’s important to get the first goal in any game. After getting that we seemed to grow in confidence. And once we got the second goal, which was an excellent finish from Charlie, we maybe could’ve killed the game.
“All credit to Nelson for the penalty save late on. Ot was a wee bit of a nervy finish, but I’m delighted for Paul McManus coming off the bench and scoring.”