He picked up the ball about 35 yards from goal, burst forward and, after a quick look up, unleashed a rasping shot which dipped, swirled and swerved beyond the despairing left hand of David McGurn and into the top-right corner of the goal. Kris Faulds, the 17-year-old substitute, had just rescued an unlikely point for Falkirk with his first senior goal.
A trick of the acoustics at Stark's Park lends every clearance, every thudded header, a deep, bassy echo. When Faulds let fly, the low thump of boot meeting ball echoed around the stadium, before the home fans gasped and then let out a collective sigh. The chance to move within two points of Hamilton, the SPFL Championship leaders, had vanished in the time it took to swing a right foot. "It was a wonder strike," admitted Grant Murray, the Raith Rovers manager.
"You could hit that 30 times and it wouldn't go in," said defender Dougie Hill. "We were comfortable, but the boy's hit a great strike. It's just the rub of the green. Last kick of the ball and it feels like a defeat."
Raith had been meandering towards the 1-0 win, solid in defence and at times dynamic in attack, with Joe Cardle spraying the ball nonchalantly across the pitch. The mercurial winger draws the eye; trudging through matches, angrily shaking his fists, berating the referee, tearing at his floppy hair like an annoyed, young Hugh Grant. His delivery, though, is anything but wooden and, after Greig Spence had won a second-minute corner, Cardle drove the ball into the area. Falkirk's defence were hapless in clearing and Grant Anderson rattled in from around six yards.
As the afternoon wore on and the sun dipped below the overhanging roof of the main stand, roasted spectators were forced to shed their jumpers and scarves and put their hands to their foreheads to catch a squinted glimpse of the action. It was like sitting an old, baked stadium in the Algarve, although a quick glance at the pasty faces in the press box was enough to dispel the notion.
A little after half-time, however, Raith weaved together a move full of exotic flair. It started on the halfway line, Calum Elliot backheeling the ball between a couple of defenders and emerging beyond them. His lay-off found Cardle, who jinked past another pair. Pass, pass again, and the ball arrived with Anderson, whose spindly right leg swung back and sent the ball towards the back post where Greig Spence was only denied by a superb Michael McGovern stop. It could have rendered the late drama irrelevant.
This was Faulds' day, though. "He's been a little off since pre-season," said his manager, Gary Locke. "I spoke to him, and testament to him, he's gone away and worked his nuts off. And that's what I've said to him: 'this is through your hard work.'"