SATURDAY saw nine points picked up by the area’s three East Super League teams and it also saw leaders Kelty Hearts get back on winning form.
Elsewhere it was a bleak day for Crossgates Primrose and Lochore Welfare, while Gardiner’s Park was unplayable yet again.
Kelty Hearts 2,
Broxburn Athletic 0.
AFTER successive defeats on league and cup duty this was an important fixture for Hearts and a toughie with Broxburn having gone to Boness and won last week.
And in the early stages it took a finger tip save by Kelty ‘keeper Kyle Marley to keep out a 25 yard free-kick from the visitors.
There was controversy soon after when Athletic had a free-kick 40 yards out from their own goal but a slack piece of work by them saw Shaun O’Neil pick up the ball and run clean through, only to be taken out by the ‘keeper who was red carded.
But it needed more Marley magic to gather a low shot after Hearts had been caught on the break then two raking shots went close for the Lothians side.
Kelty at last got going and they took the lead in 39 minutes when a cross from the Hearts' right was not dealt with and Jordyn Sheerin wasted no time in blasting home from 10 yards out.
Archie Campbell almost made it two with a great run and finish with the ball just drifting wide.
The second-half saw Broxburn continue to look dangerous on the break and Marley had to make a brave save after the visitors broke from their own penalty box.
Then the ‘keeper made two more blocks, but in 75 minutes Kelty got the clincher. The ball was played across the face of the Broxburn net by Garry Leighton and Stephen Husband was lying handy to fire the ball low into the net.
Broxburn were to end the game with nine men after another red was produced, this time for dissent.
The result means that Hearts are 23 points ahead of Bonnyrigg with seven games more played and player/boss Thomas Courts was happy with the way his team went about their work: “We had a few players out with injuries and we knew how difficult Broxburn are to play against, but we worked very hard and got the result we needed after these recent set-backs.
“We have to keep aiming to maintain our momentum and pick up as many wins as possible to make it difficult for Bonnyrigg to catch us.”
Looking at this week’s cup derby with rivals Hill of Beath he added: “It will be a very interesting tie. The Haws will be out to redress the balance after our Scottish Cup win over them and it will be a very hard game.”
Hill of Beath Hawthorn 3,
Jeanfield Swifts 1.
A FINE win for the Haws which pushed them up into seventh place in the Super League table.
After few games, due to the weather, Haws came out of the traps fast against the side which ended Kelty’s unbeaten league run and they took the lead in three minutes.
Adam Moffat’s corner was met by Colin Wilson and his header beat the ‘keeper all ends up.
Seven minutes later they doubled their lead. Stephen Forbes started the move and Aaron Hay’s dummy set up Shaun Leishman who fired the ball past the ‘keeper.
Hay saw a shot well saved as the hosts dominated and then the striker took a Calum Adamson cut-back and saw his shot cleared off the line.
Just the two in it at the break but early in the second period both Adamson and Hay went close to another goal, but back came Swifts and they got made it 2-1 with 55 minutes on the clock.
Hill of Beath were stunned by this but they were soon back on the attack and in 63 minutes grabbed the key third goal when Hay set up Adamson and he finished well.
There were other chances for the Haws but Jeanfield defended well and there was a blow for Haws with five minutes left when Lee Bryce was sent off for two yellow in a space of a minute.
The result pushed Haws up on to 26 points from 20 games and in to seventh spot and manager Bobby Wilson was pleased with the performance: “After having had so little football I was a little concerned how the lads would react to getting back out there but they played really well.
“It was three good points and now we want a run of games to keep the momentum going and a top six finish is on the agenda. Now we can look forward to this week’s East of Scotland tie at Kelty which is always a keenly contested fixture. ”
Fauldhouse United 0,
Dundonald Bluebell 5.
JUST the result Bluebell wanted and it secures their spot in the Super League for another season.
Sitting on 32 points the ‘Bell are in fifth spot and boss Stevie Kay would dearly like to finish in that position.
Fauldhouse are at the foot of the table and have been struggling defensively all season and they found Bluebell a real handful.
Goals flowed once Dundonald got the first in only two minutes through Sam Buchan’s finish and the hosts were a dispirited lot by the end.
Lewis McKenzie was a danger throughout and he made it 2-0 in only 12 minutes and even when Calum Rarity was red carded for a hard tackle just after the quarter of an hour mark the visitors were still in charge then the home side were also down a man through a red card just before the break.
Bluebell started the second period well and Mark Forbes stretched the lead in 55 and Barry Sibanda’s goal with 20 minutes left virtually completed the problems for Fauldhouse and McKenzie made the nap hand with ten to go.
Stevie Kay was very pleased by his team getting the 30 point total well ahead of schedule: “We played some really good football and created a host of chances.
“The defensive work was sound and really it was a good all round day for us.
“I always believe if you get 30 points in the Super League you will be nearly safe and to achieve it from 23 games is a very good performance by the players, although we will be looking to press on and get the points tally even higher although we will have Calum Rarity and Craig Wedderburn suspended for a couple of games which will pose problems defensively.”
Easthouses Lily 3,
Crossgates Primrose 1.
THIS was another below par performance from Primrose against a team that they would have regarded as beatable.
But they made an awful start to the game and fell behind in just four minutes.
Crossgates tried to get back into the picture but the Lily defence was solid and in 15 minutes the visitors went two behind.
Easthouses took plenty of confidence from the goals and looked capable of adding to their tally but in 25 minutes Liam Forbes struck to give the Humbuggers hope of getting something from the game.
They could have been level at the break but were denied by some good goalkeeping and it was the same story in the second period.
Both teams were creating chances but the respective goalkeepers were keeping them out and with two minutes to go it was the home side that got the third goal to clinch the points.
The result leaves Primrose in third bottom spot on 14 point from 19 games.
Lochore Welfare 0.
The Welfare went to Perthshire hoping to give Luncarty problems and while they achieved that early in the game things started to go wrong later on.
Lochore found themselves having to defend well in the early stages and they kept the home side out but were caught out when the hosts took the lead.
Luncarty have lost momentum in recent weeks but the goal lifted their confidence and they started to create chances.
Welfare could have got a goal before the break but the Luncarty ‘keeper pulled off a couple of good saves and when they grabbed a second the hopes of the visitors started to evaporate.
In the second period Luncarty started to convert their chances and in the end ran out easy winners.
Saturday’s fixtures: D J Laing East of Scotland Cup, Kelty Hearts v Hill of Beath Hawthorn. McBookie.com East Super League, Broughty Athletic v Dundonald Bluebell.
McBookie.com South Division, Lochgelly Albert v Dunbar United. McBookie.com North Division, Lochore Welfare v Newburgh (all games 2.30pm).