IN the three East of Scotland League games which beat the overnight freezing weather on Saturday, Hill of Beath Hawthorn earned a very important win.

In the other fixtures Dundonald Bluebell had an uncomfortable day at Linlithgow, and while Lochgelly Albert’s poor run of results continued, they gave Conference B title chasing Luncarty a run for their money.

Lochore Welfare also beat Crossgates Primrose 4-1 at the Fleet Grounds in Rosyth in a quickly-arranged friendly due to their matches against Preston Athletic and Musselburgh Athletic, respectively, being postponed.

Hill of Beath Hawthorn 1 Broxburn Athletic 0

THE Haws are looking to go on a run of games which will earn the points which can help them get away from the relegation zone in the Premier League and this was a tough fixture for them.

Keirs Park was playable, despite the overnight freeze, and the rain which arrived towards lunchtime saw heavy conditions for the sides as they went at it with top six side Broxburn who were looking to build their challenge at the top of the table.

Hill of Beath went forward with some decent moves but there were not a lot of clear chances for them and the home side were given a warning to the danger posed by Broxburn when a 25 yard drive came back off the bar and the ball bounced to safety.

Goalless at the break it was anyone’s game but as the pitch started to cut up it became difficult for clear openings to be created but there were a couple of half chances for the hosts although no goals.

Then in a late raid Haws forced a corner, which posed real problems for Athletic and when the ball was not cleared Mikey Fleming latched onto it, following a scramble only yards out, and slipped the ball into the net.

Haws saw out the game to collect a key win, which takes them on to 15 points from 19 games, four short of safety, but they have games in hand.

It was a result which shows that they can compete in the Premier Division and more performances like that one, in their closing 15 games, can see them pull clear of danger.

Manager Jason Dair was happy with the day’s work of his team: “I was really delighted with the performance and three points.

“Conditions were not easy but we worked really hard and fully deserved the win, but we need to build on the result and we have a very important game with one of the sides around us, Whitehill Welfare, this Saturday.”

Linlithgow Rose 5 Dundonald Bluebell 1

AFTER a fine run of results in the Premier League, this turned into a poor day for the ‘Bell in West Lothian.

Rose have had a good run of results themselves and are unbeaten in 18 games, so the Bluebell were aware that good defending was needed in this one.

However, they were punished for slackness in only five minutes and then six minutes later Linlithgow struck again.

However, the ‘Bell fought back and Barry Sibanda levelled after 34 minutes with a magnificent 35 yard free-kick.

The momentum was with Dundonald but only a minute from the break they were punished for some terrible marking to allow Rose a 3-1 interval lead.

Things got worse for the visitors when Billy Rogerson picked up a second yellow card and they were left to play the last half hour with ten players.

The ‘Bell defended solidly though but Rose eventually won a penalty in the 80th minute which was converted and a fifth in the last minute made it a bad day for the Moorsiders.

The result saw the ‘Bell moved down to tenth place and manager Kevin Fotheringham was very disappointed by the performance: “We have been defending well in recent games but we made some really basic errors in this one and paid the price.”

Lochgelly Albert 2 Luncarty 4

LUNCARTY have high hopes of finishing in the top four of Conference B, but despite making a good start they found the Berts anything but easy opponents.

The Perthshire side went ahead in the 20th minute when hesitation in the Lochgelly defence gave the visitors space to hit the net.

On the half hour it was 2-0, but four minutes later the Berts came back into it when Connor Murdoch headed home.

Lochgelly were looking lively now but another piece of slack play saw Luncarty go 3-1 ahead at the break when a free header was accepted by the visitors.

The second period saw the Berts search for a second but Luncarty were defending solidly and in the 68th minute a corner was not dealt with by the home rearguard and the ball was slipped into the net at the back post.

The Berts never gave up though and in 87 minutes Stephen Stark fired a 30 yarder into the net to put a better reflection on the result for the hosts.

Secretary Ian Patrick felt that the home side again lost avoidable goals: “Two of their strikes were created by some really slack work by us.

“We scored two really good goals and it was a greatly improved performance, but losing cheap goals makes life tough for us.”

  • Saturday’s fixtures:
  • East of Scotland Premier League - Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale v Dundonald Bluebell (2pm), Camelon v Crossgates Primrose (2.30pm), Whitehill Welfare v Hill of Beath Hawthorn (2.30pm).
  • Conference B - Lochore Welfare v Edinburgh South (1.30pm).