The increased levels of noise at the home of Raith Rovers this season is noticeable, says defender Liam Dick.
Rovers have yet to be defeated across 90 minutes at Stark’s Park this season in 12 matches.
That came under threat, as it has a few times this season, last Friday night until Lewis Vaughan completed his hattrick to salvage a draw versus Ayr United.
The impressive run stretches back to March when Hamilton Accies left with a 2-1 victory.
In fact, John Rankin’s side are the only team to have won at Stark’s Park over 90 minutes since Queen’s Park left with a 5-2 victory in November last year.
Liam Dick: Top teams have found it difficult at Stark’s
“Last season, we finished seventh. We didn’t have a great season, but there were a lot of difficulties with injuries and stuff,” Dick tells Courier Sport.
“I think this season we have made the home ground more of a fortress.
“Teams have come here and found it really difficult, top teams as well – Dundee United, Partick Thistle.
“You’ve got the fans as well that make it difficult for the opposition. When we get going and we get a couple of chances, you can really hear them.”
Raith finish off 2023 with another home tie, this time against an improving Arbroath under new manager Jim McIntyre.
The Red Litchies responded to slipping to the bottom of the Championship with a win and a draw in their last two. It came after three wins lifted Morton off the bottom and up into fifth.
Both are examples of the unpredictability of the division and why Rovers can take nothing for granted.
Friday’s 4-4 draw against the 10 men of Ayr was another and could act as a wake-up call, adds Dick, keeping their feet on their ground after such an impressive win at the home of their title rivals.
Strength in depth
Their most recent match was also another example of Raith’s strength from the bench – and their manager’s bravery to sacrifice defenders when trailing.
“The gaffer is bold and it works,” continues Dick. “The strength from the bench has been apparent all season.
“But we’ve got to do more to keep the ball at the net, we’ll have to look at that.
“It makes it more difficult being a defender, but we’ve got so much good attacking talent. We play the one holder, Shaun Byrne, and it puts a lot of responsibility on him.
“But you can’t take anything away, it’s created some really top games.
“If we never played that way, I can pretty much guarantee that we wouldn’t pick up the points that we have already this season.