Lowland League Roundup – Matchday 13

An average of 4.25 goals per game in another thrilling weekend of Lowland League action

east kilbride 0-1 kelty hearts

By Craig Edwards

Kelty Hearts continued their fine start to the season with their 11th win from 12 to stay top of the Lowland League.

East Kilbride, who had failed to win their last three league fixtures came into the match knowing a win was a must for their title hopes and started brightly but it was the visitors that made the important breakthrough.

Nathan Austin outmuscled the Kilby defender with the home fans claiming for a foul but the league’s top scorer didn’t listen as he fired the ball under Matthew McGlinchey to give Kelty the lead.

Austin would be involved in more drama as three minutes later, he turned Craig Reid and when the East Kilbride defender fouled him, he was shown a second yellow and subsequent red.

The 10 men of Kilby tried to find a way back but Ben Mackeznie and Kelty stayed strong at the back to keep the clean sheet and secure the three points.

Defeat for the home side know leaves them sixteen points adrift of the top of the table as their title defence suffers another blow.

edinburgh university 2-3 gala fairydean rovers

By Damon Main

It’s fair to say that it is not exactly ‘squeeky bum’ time down at East Peffermill. But the home ground of Edinburgh University is certainly no happy hunting ground this season for the University side who have struggled to get any run of results together.

Battling performances and effort aside, results have been poor and one glance at the Scottish Lowland League will tell you all that you need to know about the predicament that Edinburgh University find themselves in this season.

With 9 defeats from 12 matches and only 7 goals scored the form of the home side is further taken into focus when you consider that Uni have conceded an incredible 33 goals.

Moreover the home loss to Lochee United in the Scottish Cup showed further indication of a team which can leak quick goals at an alarming rate particularly in the crucial later parts of games.

University lined up in its traditional academic colours of dark green and navy blue shorts with Galafairydean Rovers resplendant in the usual red with white trim.

If University needed an early lift from this game they sadly didn’t get it. The visitors took the lead after only 7 minutes via midfield man Niall Kelly.  But just minutes after the home coach Ugunro got a yellow card for some verbal comments in the technical area the equalizer came for the home side.

The strike came from the ever tricky frontman Abdul Yusuf who knocked home on 37 minutes.

The equalizer largely brought a close to a tight match which had witnessed a smattering of boisterous tackles on what was a soft but excellent pitch.

Less than 2 minutes in to the second period Edinburgh University took the lead from a penalty kick that was awarded after a handball.     Mark Waters scoring from the spot to give the home team the lead.

In response Gala Fairydean Rovers coach Hastings made a host of substitutions to shuffle his pack.  And, soon after, one of those subs made all the difference with the Borders team levelling thanks to what looked like a deflection off sub Ross Aitchison’s efforts.

No sooner were Gala’ level when they were down to 10 men.

Levi Kinchant was sent off for his second yellow card of the game by the referee. However as is so often the case that misfortune didn’t seem to prevent Gala from stepping up a gear and they eventually clinched the points thanks to Ryan Mayer’s effort 10 minutes from time.

The remaining periods of the game witnessed a flurry of cautions from the referee but the University side were unable to find anyway through.

Edinburgh University undoubtedly contributed to this somewhat chaotic game but coach Ugunro will be alarmed at the manner at which is team seem to repeatedly collapse and lose match defining goals in the crucial final twenty minute period of games.

east stirlingshire 3-1 cumbernauld colts

By Gregor Mackintosh

Shire ran out comfortable 3-1 winners over Cumbernauld in Saturday’s encounter, which sees Shire move into 3rd place, 3 points behind 2nd placed Bonnyrigg Rose and 5 points behind current league leaders Kelty Hearts. Cumbernauld Colts however now find themselves in 9th place, as they look to replicate last seasons finish.

The game started off relatively flat, as a few half chances for both sides went wide. Lewis Bonar has the first chance of the game, as his header went just over the bar. Sean Brown had a chance a few moments later, but he failed to find the net from 6 yards after a Nicky Low cross.

Shire were awarded a penalty 25 minutes in, after Colts Dean Ritchie handled the ball in the area. Legendary Shire forward Andy Rodgers stepped up to take the penalty, but his usually prolific penalty taking record was not to be added to, as Colts keeper Alexander Gilchrist got down well to tip Rodgers penalty past the post.

Shire eventually made up for their missed chances, as Sean Brown’s looping header from a Nicky Low corner found the back of the net past a helpless Alexander Gilchrist.

The teams came out for the second half and Shire got off to a dream start, as Evan Horne won the ball back, before giving it to Nicky Low who then played it to Jamie Dishington. Dishington set off on a 30 yard run, as he dropped his shoulder to go one way before firing the ball across goal into the bottom corner from just outside the box.

Colts had 2 chances to get goals back, as Ross Kavanagh forced Shire keeper Jamie Barclay into a good save, before Stephen O’Neil had his rebounded attempt saved by Barclay again.

It was that man Jamie Dishington again who gave Shire their 3rd goal of the match, as he danced around the Colts defenders before firing into the bottom corner with his left foot from just outside the box, giving Nicky Low a hat-trick of assists.

Cumbernauld clawed one back after 70 minutes, as Marty Wright brilliantly turned the Shire defence before expertly finishing into the bottom corner of the Shire net, giving Cumbernauld some hope to perhaps snatch a point from the game.

Colts keeper Gilchrist was forced into an acrobatic diving save, as Dishington proved to be a handful again by nutmegging his defender, before squaring the ball to veteran goal scorer Peter MacDonald, whose brilliant first time volley looked certain to result in a goal, but Gilchrist in the Colts goal had other ideas.

Both sides are in SFA South Challenge Cup action next week, as The Shire take on East Kilbride at 3pm at K Park, while Cumbernauld Colts will travel to play Hill of Beath Hawthorn with a 2:30pm kick off.

vale of leithen 2-4 civil service strollers

By Martin Fleming

Civil Service Strollers grabbed another three points and cemented a fantastic comeback over bottom of the table Vale of Leithen to stay hot on the tails of the top four.

In the first half, after a Craig Newall hand ball, Vale broke the deadlock from the penalty spot shortly before the gaffer Chris Anderson headed home from close range to give his side a two goal advantage.

After the break, Strollers looked like a different breed from the first half. Josh Morris was the first to pull one back for Gary Jardine’s men thanks to an assist from Cammy Muirhead.

The Edinburgh men found their equaliser on the 60th minute when Craig Newall picked out Andy Mair in the box and was able to head it home. They eventually took the lead thanks to Cammy Muirhead shortly before Jack Hodge sealed the win in the dying minutes when he got the better of the Vale defence and slotted a low ball into the back of the net.

Chris Anderson’s remain tight in that relegation spot while Strollers will want to continue this fantastic run of form.

bonnyrigg rose 5-1 university of stirling

By Ben McNicol

Bonnyrigg Rose ran out emphatic winners on Saturday afternoon as they hammered University Of Stirling 5-1.

Rose took the lead on the 9th minute when a cut-back from Johnny Brown was slammed home from Scott Gray.
It was 2-0 one minute later. This time Dean Brett was the right man in the right place as he scored from close-range following a good save from the Stirling keeper.

It was beginning to look like a long day at the office for The Uni as they found themelves with a mountain to climb as Ross Gray made it 3-0 just after the half-hour mark.

To the visitors credit they did pull one back through James Berry on the 40th minute.

Things went from bad to worse for Stirling as they were reduced to 10 men early in the seconf half as Angus Mailer was sent off for a poor challenge.

It turned into a training exercise for the home side as they added two futher goals as Brett scored his second of the afternoon before an own goal from Stirling fullback Webb summed up what was a day to forget for the University side.

dalbeattie star 1-2 the spartans

By Ronan Alexander

A late winner from Spartans substitute Cameron Dawson got the men from the capital back to winning ways down in Dalbeattie on Saturday.

Dougie Samuel’s men took the lead on 32 minutes when thier hero from midweek Aaron Murrell raced in on goal and stuck the ball beyong Vinnie Parker and into the back of the net.

But half an hour later, the hosts were level. Danger man Lewis Sloan fired a powerful shot beyond Carswell, much to the dismay of the visiting dugout as they had left back Dean Hoskins down injured at the time but play continued.

In a fiery final quarter of the match, both managers looked to their bench for a bit of inspiration to win the game. And on 85 minutes, target man Dawson entered the field for the visitors and a minute later he provided the winning moment.

bsc glasgow 4-1 gretna 2008

By Martin Fleming

Stephen Swift’s men continue the fight for top three thanks to two goals from the skipper and a goal apiece for Thomas Collins and Jamie Hamilton.

The goals came almost immediately – Ross McMillan got the head onto a Declan Hughes corner only four minutes in before Kevin Connolly grabbed an equaliser three minutes later. The Raydale men then seemed content to fight out for a point for the remainder of the first half.

Aaron Taylor brought down Tom Orr in the box gifting BSC a penalty but the forward couldn’t convert it when Taylor got down low and guessed right.

Chris Humphry’s men were clearly happy to sit behind the ball following the break but BSC were adamant the three points were theirs when three goals came in just fifteen minutes; Ross McMillan got on to yet another header from a corner, Jamie Mills picked out Thomas Collins who hit home and Jamie Hamilton received an assist from Dave McKay then fired home with a low drive.

BSC Glasgow continues to sit fourth but with two games in hand over East Stirlingshire and one game in hand over Kelty Hearts and Bonnyrigg Rose. Meanwhile Gretna remain in the bottom three.

caledonian braves 2-2 berwick rangers

By Ben McNicol

Caledonian Braves came from behind twice at Alliance Park on Saturday afternoon to get a draw against Berwick Rangers.

After a goalless first-half, the game burst into life early in the second-half and ended up turning into a thriller.

The deadlock was broken on the 53rd minute when Kevin Waugh curled an unstoppable free-kick into the top corner from 25 yards out.

The Braves responded well after falling behind and were nearly level within minutes when some excellent play from John Guthrie saw him play a one-two with McNeil, who’s low drive across the face of goal was nearly turned into his own net by Ali Forster.

After a long spell of pressure the home side eventually found an equaliser as Neil McLaughlin’s strike from outside the box flew past Mark Walters.

If anyone looked likely to win now it was certainly Ricky Waddell’s side, but Berwick regained the lead following a defensive mix-up. A long punt forward ended with Dom Slattery headering the ball over his own keeper and Lewis Barr was on hand to tap home into the empty net,

The scoring wasn’t done there though as The Braves fought right until the death and scored with seconds remaining. when a cross from the left found Raffi Krissan and his looping header ended up sneaking in at the back-post.