It’s been a mere week since we last joined you with an SLFL Roundup and yet so much has happened in that time that we’ll need to skirt over the midweek fixtures in just one paragraph. Hold on to your hats…
A full midweek round of Scottish Lowland Football League fixtures saw wins for The Spartans, BSC Glasgow, East Kilbride, Cumbernauld Colts, Selkirk, and Edinburgh University who scored a last minute winner to beat East Stirlingshire. It was bad news for Gretna 2008’s talismanic striker Stuart Gray who is likely to miss several months of the season after damaging his knee in the Black and Whites’ 5-1 win over Edusport Academy.
Matchday 11 – non-league day
Derbies were the order of the day on Non-League Day and now seems as good a time as any to thank the clubs and fans who made the day a success.
Gretna 2008, without Stuart Gray, saw their rivals Dalbeattie Star turn up at Raydale Park fresh after a midweek postponement and what a game it turned out to be. This Gretna side have goals in abundance and industrious striker Kevin Connelly put them ahead inside 20 minutes before Kingsley Grandison added a second ten minutes after half time. Dalbeattie Star weren’t to be outdone though: Lewis Todd and James Baty hit quickfire goals to level the scores at 2-2. Kevin Connelly popped up with his eighth goal of the season in the dying moments of the match.
There had been cards galore in this feisty derby and both Gretna’s Jack Hunter and Star’s Steven Degnan saw their yellows turn into reds before the final whistle blew.
Selkirk paid a visit to Victoria Park to take on Vale of Leithen and, with games in hand on the league leaders, put pressure on the table-toppers. Calum Helm scored on 18 minutes for Ian Fergus’ side before Kerr Allan equalised for the hosts on the half hour. Our preview picked out Selkirk midfielder David Banjo as one to watch this weekend and he scored with ten minutes to go to make 3-1 to The Souters and put them within seven points of the summit with two games in hand.
It was early pace-setters BSC Glasgow that a number of teams were looking to make up ground on this weekend and their hosts Civil Service Strollers duly obliged. Gary Redpath scored early for the visitors but from then on it was Civil, Civil, Civil as the Christie Gillies Park side ran out 4-2 victors thanks to two goals from Jack Downie, one from Stephen Froude and one for the enigmatic A. Trialist.
Advantage to The Spartans then as they welcomed old foes Whitehill Welfare to Ainslie Park looking to put their game in hand to good use and reel in BSC. An entertaining game between two famous old rivals resulted in a 2-0 Spartans victory with second half goals from Blair Tolmie and Jamie Dishington sealing the three points. Dougie Samuel’s side now side just one point behind top spot with a game in hand.
East Kilbride picked up a solid win in midweek and were looking to build on it against an Edusport Academy side licking their wounds after a heavy defeat at home. A tight game with some excellent football on both sides saw Ahmed Bouchentouf cancel out Sean Winter’s first half goal but teenager Michael Anderson came off the bench and made the difference with ten minutes to go – his strike giving Billy Stark’s side a 2-1 win.
Andy Rodgers found his scoring boots for East Stirlingshire who took advantage of two losses for Edusport to move into eighth in the table with a 3-1 win over Cumbernauld Colts. William Mortimer scored in the first half for Colts before Rodgers cancelled it out on the stroke of half time. Second half goals for Liam Allison and another for Rodgers did for Colts who slip into fifth.
It’s been all change under Craig Tully at Hawick Royal Albert and a good crowd at Albert Park welcomed rivals Gala Fairydean Rovers. The Albert kept things tight and both sides were creating good chances and there was just a hint that the hosts might be about to pick up their first point of the season. Unfortunately no-one had told Jamie Gullan that and he scored with ten minutes to go before Billy Miller added a second on 90 minutes, leaving Hawick with nothing.
Last but not least we head back to Edinburgh and the glorious surroundings of Peffermill for the University Derby as Dorian Ogunro’s Edinburgh University welcomed University of Stirling whose manager Chris Geddes named himself in the starting lineup. It was a tightly contested match between two incredibly committed and well-organised sides and it was the finest of margins that saw Stirling take the win. A stab home in a six-yard box stramash from Lewis Bonar gave the three points to the visitors.
Vale of Leithen and Gala Fairydean Rovers are the only teams in SLFL action next weekend as attention turns back to the Scottish Cup and Football Nation Qualifying Cup, so you’ll be able to enjoy some peace next Monday.
Here’s the all-important league table…
|7||Civil Service Strollers||30||11||7||12||47||44||3||40|
|9||University of Stirling||30||11||5||14||45||49||-4||38|
|13||Gala Fairydean Rovers||30||8||7||15||43||63||-20||31|
|15||Vale of Leithen||30||8||5||17||44||76||-32||29|
|16||Hawick Royal Albert||30||1||3||26||18||108||-90||6|
And here’s the top goalscorers list…
|Paul Sludden||East Stirlingshire||18|
|Andy Rodgers||East Stirlingshire||18|
|Stuart Noble||Gala Fairydean Rovers||11|
|Gary Nicholson||Whitehill Welfare||10|
|Nathan Evans||Edinburgh University||8|
|Kieran Hall||University of Stirling||8|
|Tommy Muir||Dalbeattie Star||8|
|Jack Guthrie||Edinburgh University||8|
|Jordan Finnie||Vale of Leithen||7|
|Stuart Gray||Gretna 2008||7|
|Lewis Bonar||University of Stirling||7|
|Jamie McCormack||East Stirlingshire||6|
|Thomas Garnier||Caledonian Braves||6|
|Kerr Allan||Vale of Leithen||6|
|Jack Wright||Whitehill Welfare||6|
|Chris Geddes||University of Stirling||6|
|Joe Boyle||Edinburgh University||6|