Carluke’s unbeaten run stretching from November was finally ended in this league match v Blantyre Vics with the damage being done in the first half although a spirited second half fight back almost saw a share of the spoils.
Rovers found themselves a goal down in only 4 mins when their poor marking allowed a shot from distance that flew past Jonny Grier for 1-0 to the Vics.
Carluke almost gave an instant reply when a good ball forward found the ever alert Ryan Smillie who dispossessed the Vics centre half before chipping the keeper but his effort came back off the bar before being cleared.
As is often the case the home side broke up-field after this escape and doubled their lead after aa shot at the back post was well saved by Grier in the Rovers goal only for the ball to fall to a waiting Vics striker who made it 2-0.
The play was very much bogged down for long spells in the half but Rovers created the next chance when a ball to the back post found Jamie Dickson but his sliced effort was cleared off the line by a grateful Vics defence.
The nightmare first half for Rovers was rounded off when they lost a strange free kick 25 yards out and an excellent low finish again beat Grier to give a half time score of 3-0 to the hosts.
Rovers could have capitulated at this point but instead gave a good account of themselves in the second half and pulled a goal back in the 55th min when a ball to the back post was cleared to Rovers man Dean Kindlan who hammered an unstoppable shot from 25 yards for 3-1.
Rovers next chance came when a free kick found Smillie but after a good turn his end shot was saved.The half was not all one way traffic though and Grier was called on to make a couple of good stops in the Carluke goal the second at the expense of a high boot to the chest.
Rovers reduced the deficit further in the 73rd min when Smillie played the ball to Greig Cavanagh whosaw his shot on goal blocked by a hand at the expense of a penalty, Mark Weir stepped up to take thekick after a long delay and blasted the ball high in to the net for 3-2.
Grier had to deal with another free kick from Vics as the half drew to a close before the last real chance of the match fell to Rovers when Smillie linked up with Gordon Murphy before the ball ended in the path of Ian Watt but his effort was welll over the bar.
Grier, Lithgow, Stark, Haddow, Wilson, Dickson(Cavanagh), Dean Kindlan, Murphy, Smillie, Watt.