Dumbarton brought their 2018/19 season to a close with a 1-1 draw against League One Champions Abroath at Gayfield.

Calum Gallagher fired Sons ahead, but Cammy Ballantyne conceded a penalty and received a red card for a handball with Michael McKenna dispatching the spot-kick.

Conor Brennan was handed a start in goal for Jim Duffy’s side with the remaining 10 players very much as you’d expect as the Sons boss continued with his preferred team that has now gone six games unbeaten.

And the run hasn’t gone unnoticed with Duffy being awarded the April Manager of the Month Award in League One, and Gallagher receiving Player of the Month after four goals in April.

Sons were on the back foot in the opening stages as Luke Donnelly flashed an effort across goal.

For the visitors, Dom Thomas skipped by two defenders and delivered the ball just out of reach of both Gallagher and Bobby Barr.

Brennan then comfortably held Ryan McCord’s shot before making an impressive stop with his foot to deny Omar Kader - giving Sons fans memories of Stevie Grindlay’s heroic goalkeeping display against The Lichties in the play-offs when Dumbarton were promoted to the Championship in 2012.

Gallagher found himself one-on-one with opposition keeper Darren Jamieson but bobbled the effort right at the Arbroath number one before Stuart Carswell clipped the post.

In the second-half, Gallagher glanced a header just wide of the post after Cammy Ballantyne’s delivery.

The Lichties were lifting the trophy after the game, but Sons were there to spoil the party and took the lead.

Thomas shrugged off the attentions of Colin Hamilton and put the ball across goal for man of the moment Gallagher who touched it beyond Jamieson.

The hosts were unfortunate not to be level just a couple of minutes later, however, as Sons defender Brian McLean got the final touch on a low cross but the ball fell into the arms of Brennan.

Sons were looking fairly comfortable, but a huge turning point came just after the hour mark when Ballantyne made a heroic save to keep out McCord’s effort.

Unfortunately for Dumbarton, Ballantyne did so with his hand and was given his marching orders as the referee pointed to the spot with McKenna squeezing the spot-kick home.

Sons still created chances, and Barr should have given Jamieson no chance after Thomas clipped the ball to the back post, but the Arbroath keeper kept out his effort.

It looked like Dumbarton substitute Iain Russell had won the game for the 10 men on the 89th minute, but the flag of the linesman ruled out Beanie’s 200th career goal before he fired another effort over the bar.

The result brings the League One season to a close, and in a campaign that started full of hope and optimism after relegation from the Championship, Sons fans will be glad to see the back of it as attention now turns to whether or not Duffy will stay on for next season.

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