KELTY HEARTS boss John Potter felt his side “could’ve done a little bit more” in the opening period after watching them battle back for a share of the points on Saturday.
Jamie Barjonas’ second half equaliser, after Adam Frizzell had Airdrieonians ahead at the interval, preserved a point for the ‘Maroon Machine’ in the 1-1 draw, but they are now seven points adrift of fourth-placed Alloa Athletic in the chase for the Championship play-off places.
In conditions that Potter described post-match as “horrific”, Cowdenbeath native Callum Smith, making his 100th appearance for the Diamonds, tried to mark his milestone with a goal early on, shooting at Darren Jamieson, before the hosts spurned an excellent opportunity.
Visiting goalkeeper, Joshua Rae, played cleared a back pass straight to the feet of Kallum Higginbotham but, with the goal unguarded, he fired his first-time effort high and wide from the right-edge of the penalty area.
Kelty would rue that opportunity in the 21st minute when Calum Gallagher’s pass found Frizzell, after Reis Peggie missed the ball while attempting to clear, to finish clinically from around eight yards out.
The outstretched leg of Rae denied Barjonas an equaliser after he was well found by Higginbotham, before the midfielder came even closer after the break, clipping the crossbar with a fine effort.
Barjonas, however, was not to be denied and pulled his team level.
He started the move, playing a pass to Darren Lyon, who helped it on for Joe Cardle to cross and find Barjonas, who had made a fine run to the back post, to net from six yards.
That was his fifth goal of the season and the 23-year-old almost had another, lashing a drive from the edge of the box into the side netting, as Kelty looked for a winner.
Despite their best efforts, the spoils were shared, and Potter said afterwards: “It was obviously tough for both teams.
“Conditions were horrific – some of the worst I’ve seen actually – just with the wind and the rain. It kept changing about.
“I thought they, probably, were better with the conditions first half. The goal’s a mistake, but they made a couple of mistakes as well – we didn’t take advantage.
“I just thought we could’ve done a little bit more first half. Second half, we had a couple of chances and I thought we were on the front foot a little bit more, a little bit better. We got balls in the box a bit more, the subs helped as well – we’ve said that in recent weeks that subs have come on and impacted the game – so they managed to do that and we managed to get a goal.
“Obviously we had a wee chance at the end as well, hit the crossbar second half, so we’ve got a little bit more final third entries second half, and just a bit disappointed not to win it.”
Midfielder, Darren Lyon, added: “I thought second half we improved.
“First half I thought we had a couple of chances, obviously we lost a goal against the run of play I would say.
“I didn’t think we were brilliant in the first half but I still think we had a couple of chances to maybe put one away.
“Second half we were much better I thought.”