BRIAN RICE praised his players for going until the final whistle but admitted his frustration at not getting a second goal.

Alloa took the lead through an unlikely source in Daniel Church but couldn't make their dominance count. Hosts Kelty Hearts equalised through Alfredo Agyeman and Alloa couldn't get the winner their performance merited.

Rice said: "I thought [in] the first half we were excellent, we were dominant [in the] first half. We scored a great goal, couldn't get the second goal. Just couldn't get the second goal.

"Kelty came out in the second half, changed their system, caused us a couple of problems and got the equaliser.

"Then we change our system and get on top again and I think in the last 20 minutes there's only one team going to go and win it.

"We've had a goal chalked off from a corner which I think is pretty soft but at the end of the day we kept going to try and get that winner, we just couldn't get it.

"When you're on top you want to go and score and keep on top, we had a couple of chances, their goalie made a couple of saves. We just couldn't get that second goal for all our good play deserved."

Willie Muir started in goals despite Jay Hogarth being named on the teamsheet. Rice explained that was an enforced decision, and spoke on another couple of absentees.

He continued: "Jay hurt himself in the warm-up and we had to change it at the last minute. Willie [Muir] came in and done exceptionally well, looked confident. It's his first game this season in the league.

"We had to change that, we had one or two other wee problems – [Craig] Howie got injured, Steven Buchanan was in a wee car crash and has a bit of whiplash. Listen, we went out [and] we tried to win the game, from the first minute to the last minute we tried to win the game. That's all I ask for."

Church's goal came from a nice passage of play involving Kevin Cawley and Murray Miller and Rice praised his left-back for the finish but says he wants more from him.

"It's a good move," Rice said. "It's a good move and it's good play and it's a great finish from Churchy. He should be scoring more goals with the left foot that he's got. But he's got to want to score the goals, he's got to want to get into those positions and I encourage him all the time to go and score. I'm delighted he scored the goal.

"I'm not disappointed because I thought we played well, I'm just a wee bit frustrated that we couldn't get the second goal."

Rice admits he wasn't close enough to make his own call on Alloa's disallowed goal but explained he believes it was soft due to the reaction of his players.

He said: "I'm a long way away from it and the referee's closer but I can see from the reaction of all the players that they thought it was soft and the consensus in the changing room is that it was a soft decision.

"Sometimes they go for you, sometimes they go against you. The referee's made his decision, we've just got to get on with it."

Stefan Scougall's late introduction was a welcome sight and Rice was pleased with his input.

He added: "It's great to have him back, we know how good a player he is. He's had his problems with his ribs but he's done a bit of training.

"He wasn't ready to start but you see the difference he makes when he comes on so it's good to see him back."