LEITH ATHLETIC progressed to the final of the Alex Jack Cup with two goals from set pieces either side of half-time, both from superb deliveries from Stephen Barrie.
The game had been switched to the 4G surface at Spartans’ Ainslie Park and this appeared to suit the Athletic players more than those from Ormiston.
Leith started off positively and Lewis Tracey, who had an excellent game, hit a shot which landed on the roof of the net before Steven Lynch lifted an effort over the bar from 16 yards. Ormiston responded with two free kicks from Craig Fisher which Iain Gordon dealt with.
Leith continued to have the edge and duly went ahead in the 37th minute when a Barrie corner from the left was met by Neil Lowson. His powerful header flashed into the net via the underside of the crossbar T
The feat was repeated seven minutes into the second half, when another Barrie corner from the left was headed in by Chris Beaton, again off the woodwork.
Within a minute, however, a long clearance from Ormiston’s Stuart Fisher caught out the Leith defence and Richie Weir sneaked in to head the ball over the exposed Gordon.
Leith created and missed several opportunities and they were almost made to pay when Graham Nisbet brought out a good save from Gordon.
Then, with the last kick of the semi-final, Conor Ramage shot high over the bar from only six yards out.
Derek Riddel, the relieved Leith manager, said: “I think that we were always in control of the game and had a large chunk of possession. We also created quite a few chances but probably not enough and we did not test their goalkeeper, but I also think the scoreline of 2-1 maybe flattered Ormiston a bit. They did not create many chances and Iain Gordon did not have many saves to make.
“We’re in the final and I am delighted for the guys to be there. Ormiston made us break them down and we got there in the end with both goals coming from set pieces. We do have set corners that we work on and to be honest, we were thinking about changing them recently, but maybe we will have to rethink that!
“They were two great balls from Stephen Barrie and two equally great headers in. It’s always nice to see these things that you work on at training come off in games. The goal we conceded was a mix-up in communication and these things happen in football matches. We will learn from that.
“This will be my first cup final as a manager in the East of Scotland League and it will also be a first for most of our players, so it’s about enjoying the occasion in a local derby against Craigroyston. What more could you ask for?”
Ormiston manager Murray Cheyne was gracious in defeat when he said: “I thought that we were a bit unlucky, although the better team won on the day. Both goals came from set pieces which means it was not too good defensively from our point of view.
“We came back into the game and could have equalised with the last kick of the game, but Conor put the ball over the bar. Overall, the boys did well.
“Leith were a bit quicker on the surface compared to us and they used the ball a bit better, although I think that we did reasonably well and there were a lot of positives to take from the game.”
Leith Athletic: Gordon, C Barrie, Hall, Lowson, Tainsh, Lynch, S Barrie (Thom 83), Cairns, Tulloch (Boggie 64), Beaton (Stevens 71), Tracey. Subs: Thomson, Smith.
Ormiston: Simmonds, Davidson, Cornhill, S Fisher, Clancy, Adams (Nisbet 65), Weir, C Fisher, Ramage, Young, McEwan (Carter 83). Subs: Donnelly, Tulloch, Calder.
Referee: John Weir.