The league season has already begun for Stranraer's first team, but the under 20s are preparing to face their opening SPFL Development League West fixture this coming week.

The young Blues side will face competitive action for the first time on Monday (21 August) against Queen's Park at Kilbirnie Ladeside's Valefield Park, with a 6.45pm kickoff time.

A cup tie at home to Mid Annandale 20s on 3 September also awaits, following the SYFA 1st Round draw.

20s mclaughlin beith

In the meantime, U20s boss Stuart Wild and his squad have prepared for the league campaign with a series of challenging pre-season fixtures.

Neilston Juniors 0-2 Stranraer 20s
Scorers: McKinlay (24), Burns (37)

Neilston Juniors FC Club Crest 00 Stranraer FC Facebook

The final pre-season game was completed with a 2-0 win last night (Wednesday) at Brig O' Lea against a well organised Neilston Juniors.

A depleted squad travelled through to a rain lashed Neilston missing new signings from Ayr United Adam Caldwell and top scorer Jai Holland, who had holiday commitments. Also absent was young goalkeeper Ryan McLaren, who has gone out on loan to Irvine Victoria, and injured first team contender Chris McGowan.

That meant a reshuffle in the starting line up, with first team stopper Max Currie filling the number 1 jersey.

The first chance arrived after a good buildup. Kieron McLaughlin out-paced the full back to send over a tempting cross, but a stretching Gavin Scott just failed to convert.

It would be a player who has warmed the first team bench in recent weeks - Hamish McKinlay - who put the young Blues head after 24 minutes.

Currie picked out debutant Cammy Elliot on the left, who released McKinlay to neatly finish from 18 yards.

The second goal came on 37 minutes, after a driving run from midfield by Fraser Burns.

Burns did well to create space for Kieran McLaughlin, who fired a powerful left footed shot across the keeper into the left hand corner of the net.

The second half was an even affair, with Currie and defenders John Mitchell and Zack Simpson keeping the lively Neilston forwards at bay for the young blues to manage the game out to a 2-0 win.

The clean sheet was a welcome boost to 20s manager Stuart Wild, after suffering a 4-0 reverse to St Mirren 20s despite keeping the full-time side at bay for the first half.

Yoker Athletic 0-1 Stranraer U20s
Scorer: Holland

yoker logo00 Stranraer FC Facebook

Prior to the St Mirren clash, the under 20s travelled to Clydebank to play junior side Yoker Athletic - again without the two loanees McLaren (Irvine Victoria) and David Gray (Kilbirnie Ladeside), with Currie deputising between the posts.

The young Stranraer side started positively, and hesitancy in the centre of the Yoker defence allowed Jai Holland to dispossess their central defender and run in, before slipping the ball past the keeper confidently from 12 yards.

Yoker came back into the game after the early setback, but a confident display from Currie kept the Blues goal intact.

Chances fell to both sides, and a fantastic diving save in the dying minutes by the Yoker keeper from Gavin Scott saw the game end 1-0.

View U20 and South of Scotland fixtures

SPFL 3L1 6474

1 Arbroath 16 42
2 Raith Rovers 16 29
3 East Fife 16 23
4 Montrose 16 21
5 Forfar Athletic 16 21
6 Airdrieonians 16 20
7 Stranraer 16 20
8 Dumbarton 16
9 Brechin City 16 16
10 Stenhousemuir 16 15


2018/19 Squad

1 - Max Currie (GK)
2 - Daniel Higgins (DEF)

3 - Chris McGowan (DEF)
4 - Andy McDonald (DEF)
5 - David Brownlie (DEF)
6 - Connor McManus (MID)
7 - Mark Lamont (MID)
8 - Kyle Turner (MID)
10 - Luke Donnelly (STR)
11 - Grant Anderson (M/S)
12 - Ian Smith (MID)

13 - Lyle Avci (GK)
14 - Cameron Elliott (MID)
16 - Max Ashmore (MID)
17 - David Smith (D/M)
18 - Innes Cameron (STR)
19 - Ciaran Diver (STR)
20 - PJ Crossan (STR)

22 - Jamie Hamill (DEF)
23 - Adam Cummins (DEF)