GK – Stuart McKenzie (Cove Rangers) – A league title, 17 clean sheets and even a freak winning goal at Balmoor! It was a terrific season between the posts for the Toonsers’ No 1. The experienced keeper is the anchor behind a back line which conceded just 32 goals in 36 games en route to promotion to the cinch Championship. A commanding presence in the box, and a fine shot stopper, McKenzie will be determined to maintain his high standards in his maiden second tier campaign.
DEF – Cammy Ballantyne (Montrose) – It’s back-to-back L1 Team of the Season appearances for the best right back in the division. Yet again, Ballantyne showed his class on the right side of defence for a Montrose side which secured a top-four finish in cinch L1 for a fourth consecutive season. Whether flying up the right flank to support the attack, or showing his defensive capabilities at the back, Ballantyne is a top, top player. One of the very best full backs in the lower leagues, he recently signed for Airdrie ahead of the 22/23 campaign.
DEF – Rhys McCabe (Airdrieonians) – A player who was initially signed as a creative central midfielder, McCabe has taken to his new position like a duck to water. A calming presence at the back, with the ability to take the ball under pressure in any situation, as well as displaying great defensive awareness and positional sense, McCabe is a natural leader and a key component to this Airdrie team, both on and off the park. He will be looking to lead the Lanarkshire side to promotion in 22/23 in a new player-manager role, aged just 29!
DEF – Callum Fordyce (Airdrieonians) – Another player making back-to-back L1 TOTS appearances, Fordyce has been arguably the league’s best central defender for the last three seasons. Despite not being the tallest of centre backs, ‘Dycey’ is a commanding presence at the heart of a Diamonds rear-guard which shipped just 37 goals in the league all season. A terrific defender who makes the game look easy, Airdrie’s skipper will be taking up further leadership duties in 22/23, joining defensive partner McCabe as his assistant player-manager!
DEF – Harry Milne (Cove Rangers) – Arguably the best left back outside of the top-flight. Milne’s exploits in 21/22 have earned him a full-time move to Partick Thistle for next season. An incredibly classy player who never looks flustered, Milne proved to be a driving force for creativity down Cove Rangers’ left hand side in their title-winning campaign. The 25-year-old scored six and assisted seven goals in the league, including stunning strikes against Airdrie & Falkirk. A season to remember for an outstanding player!
MID – Dylan Easton (Airdrieonians) – Having spent a couple of seasons outside the SPFL, Easton joined the Diamonds in June 2021. The last 12 months have shown the very best of the talented midfield player. Known primarily for his trickery and creativity, Easton’s work ethic and defensive capabilities were also at the forefront of his game, being the linchpin of an Airdrie side, which went on a remarkable 15-game unbeaten run in the second half of the season. Scoring eight goals and assisting 12, Easton was the main man in Monklands in 21/22. Recently signed for Raith Rovers.
MID – Fraser Fyvie (Cove Rangers) – The beating heart of Cove Rangers’ title-winning side. Fyvie’s talents and dynamism were on full display throughout the 21/22 season. Whether playing in his more natural position in the middle of the park, or as an out-and-out forward, the Toonsers’ number 24 was in sparkling form. A driving force in every sense, Fyvie netted eight league goals, including an incredible stoppage-time volley to all but clinch the title away to Airdrie in March. Fyvie will be key to whether Cove continue their upwards trajectory in next season’s cinch Championship.
MID – Adam Frizzell (Airdrieonians) – Another incredibly talented attacking midfield player. Much like Easton, Frizzell showed in 21/22 that there is much more to his game than just creativity and flair. A tireless runner and a tenacious presser, the 24-year-old impressed whether playing on the right flank or in a more central role. Equally adept at driving play forward with close control and dribbling, or picking forward passes from deeper areas, Diamonds fans will be delighted that Frizzell is signed up for another season in Lanarkshire.
FWD – Simon Murray (Queen’s Park) – If important goals are what you’re after, Simon Murray is the striker for you. Murray started the season in red hot form, bagging four goals in his first five cinch League 1 appearances but injuries meant the Spiders’ hitman missed a large chunk of the season between December and March. Murray’s TOTS inclusion is merited though. Returning from injury to score crucial play-off goals against Dunfermline and Airdrie which sees Queen’s promoted to Scotland’s second tier for the first time since 1982/83.
FWD – Rory McAllister (Cove Rangers) – It was another season to remember for the SPFL’s all-time top scorer. McAllister’s attacking partnership with Mitch Megginson proved to be the most productive in the division, firing the Toonsers to title-winning glory. The 35-year-old contributed to 22 goals in the league, scoring 16 and assisting a further six. An impressive campaign from a player who looked back to his best in 21/22, McAllister will be aiming to maintain his stellar goalscoring record in next season’s cinch Championship.
FWD – Mitch Megginson (Cove Rangers) – A Cove Rangers legend and one of the most prolific goalscorers in the lower leagues. Top scorer in the SPFL and Star Man in cinch League 1, Mitch Megginson was outstanding once again in the Blue of his hometown club. Notching 18 goals and 11 assists to help fire his side to the title, Megginson scooped up the cinch L1 Player of the Season accolade. A player whose game goes far beyond just scoring and assisting goals, Megginson is a fantastic technical player with a remarkable work ethic. Expect to see Cove’s No 9 going after the cinch Championship top scorer’s berth in 22/23!