East Stirling 0-2 Raith: Visitors ease to cup win

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RAITH Rovers were last night eyeing another prolonged cup run after easing to a comfortable victory over East Stirlingshire.

Already through to the Ramsdens Cup final against Rangers at Easter Road in April, a Gordon Smith strike and an own goal by Shire full-back Michael McGowan ensured this season’s impressive knockout record continued.

Smith, who took his tally to three in three games, said: “It was a really difficult match. East Stirling are doing well in their league, so we are delighted to be through to the next round. It would be great to get another cup run going.”

Home goalkeeper Grant Hay was magnificent for the League Two leaders in the first half, denying Raith debutant Kevin McCann, Grant Anderson and Callum Booth as Raith dominated

Shire had a goal chalked off for offside against Michael Herd and Smith hit the post with a header on the stroke of half-time. But just three minutes after the break, the former Hearts striker finally edged his team in front as he rifled a left-foot shot across Hay from Callum Booth’s intelligent cutback.

Shire’s hopes of a comeback were snuffed out with Raith’s second ten minutes from time. Again it was a Booth cross that did that damage, this time home full-back Michael McGowan slicing his clearance into his own net from three yards out.

Manager John Coughlin said: “We had a go at it and Raith have had to work hard to go through, but they more than merited their victory.”