Sandys AFC stretched their lead at the top of Premier Division 1 to eight points after a 3-0 defeat of Uphall Station at Castleview.
However, second-placed Edinburgh Rose remain favourites for this year’s title having played five games fewer than reigning champions Sandys.
The home side took a 1-0 lead into the half-time interval courtesy of James Reilly’s composed finish after a Thomas Crease cross. Robert McKenzie’s fine pass then picked out the run of Crease who had enough pace to round the Uphall goalkeeper before slotting into an empty net to put Sandys two-up.
Crease then carved out his second of the match when he received Dale Miller’s pass inside the visitors’ box and created a little bit of space before rifling the ball into the corner.
Sandys secretary Patrick Mason was pleased his side returned to form after last week’s defeat to Whitburn but admits his players face a real challenge to retain their crown.
Mason said: “We were short of a player or two but it was a lot better than our previous performance against Whitburn Bluebell. The problem for us is the title is out of our own hands as other teams, particularly Edinburgh Rose, have got games in hand. All we can do is take each game as it comes. We’ve got plenty to play for between now and the end of the season.”
Loanhead blast seven
Loanhead MW produced a resounding performance by thumping Newtongrange Star A 7-0 in the fourth round of the Centenary Cup at Abbeylands.
The visitors proved too strong for their Premier Division 2 opponents as Newtongrange struggled to adapt to the pace and finesse of the Loanhead attack.
Lewis Montgomery opened the scoring with a close-range finish before Craig Robertson’s left-footed volley from 18 yards found the bottom right corner to make it 2-0. Montgomery then made it 3-0 prior to the break after finding the far corner from the left side to put his side firmly in the ascendancy.
Loanhead didn’t let up in the second half as they continued to pepper the home side’s goal and Montgomery completed his hat-trick with a neat finish and the visitors’ fourth of the afternoon. Ryan Sclater then got his name on the scoresheet for the fifth before Andy Gemmill finished off a well-worked move for his side’s sixth.
Sclater then compounded Newtongrange’s misery with a seventh and arguably the goal of the game when he cut in from the right-hand side before easing himself past a couple of defenders and rounding the Newtongrange No. 1 to score.
Loanhead’s Alex Coutts is hoping his side can progress beyond Whitburn Bluebell in the quarter-finals and set up a shot at glory.
Coutts said: “We would like a chance of some silverware. It would be great to progress to the latter stages and the final as a reward for the hard work that has gone in this year.”
Dalkeith see off Spartans
Dalkeith pulled off an impressive 4-0 victory over Spartans at Iron Mills to move into the quarter-finals of the Logan Cup.
The Midlothian team will now face a tricky tie away to Premier Division 1 rivals Edinburgh South Vics for a place in the last four.
Paul McDermott fired the home side into the lead when he got on the end of a cross from the left and the ball squirmed over the line despite pressure from a defender.
Laurie Flynn then doubled Dalkeith’s lead after the break when he converted from a corner at the back post with a toe-poked finish.
Chris Wright ensured there would be no comeback for Spartans when he finished off a cross from the left from close range to make it 3-0 before Mark Brown weaved a bit off magic with a fantastic individual effort for the home side’s fourth.
Dalkeith’s Gary Rankin said: “We expected a harder game but we played very well.
“We haven’t been at our best the last couple of games but we got it together and didn’t allow Spartans to settle.
“The Logan is the association’s biggest cup but we’ve got a tough tie against Edinburgh South Vics in the next round which will be tough.”