THE giant-killing ladies of Bainfield IBC reached the semi finals of the Scottish Cup with a thrilling four-shot victory (77-73) over East Fife at neutral venue Portobello.
The latest heroic effort from a team that struggled to shine in their recent Division 1 campaign saw them produce a brilliant finish to upset the odds against Premier League opposition that included three current caps in Lynn Stein, Julie Sword and Lesley Gordon.
East Fife had the measure of Bainfield on three rinks, but suffered a heavy game- changing defeat on the fourth.
The headline-makers for Bainfield were the rink of Betty Eaton, Ann Matthew, Cathy Falconer and skip Theresa Blair, who thrashed their opposition by a 21-shot margin that was enough to cover the defeat of Anna Anderson, Anne Watson and Kathryn O’Donnell.
“All four of our cup wins have been by single-figure margins and this latest success demonstrates once more that a strong team spirit can pull you through when the going gets tough,” said team manager Muriel Old.
The match developed into an epic battle, with East Fife edging the first seven-end phase 25-24 and the third 26-24, but Bainfield tipped the scales with a 29-22 score in between.
End 14 raised a massive cheer from the Bainfield support as they responded to a 7-0 clean-sweep that put the Edinburgh challengers into a 53-47 lead. East Fife, however, hit back with a 7-1 reply to level at 54-54. East Fife entered the penultimate end (20th) with their nose in front at 68-66 but the underdogs snapped back with a match-winning 6-3, 5-2 finish.
The closing highlights saw Watson card a three on her second-last end, then O’Donnell counted a single at her last as a result of third player Marion Dickson killing four shots against with a brilliant back-jack toucher.
More last-end thrills saw Anderson also faced with four shots against her, but she reduced the deficit to one with a yard-on trail of the jack through the head then brilliantly drew first shot with her final delivery.
Blair and her rink led 11-2 after eight ends, and 18-6 after 12 before capturing the match headlines with a 32-11 win over Cathy Bain. In contrast, Anderson and her rink of Sheila Grigor, Kathleen Barr and Hazel Crombie were always up against it in a 24-12 defeat from Julie Sword. Watson and her front-three of Heather Stoddart, Davina Crawford and Isa Wilson were in touch at 13-14 after 15 ends but gave 21-18 best to Lynn Stein.
O’Donnell skipped Susan Allan Susan Brown and Marion Dickson into a 14-9 lead after 14-ends but slipped to a 17-15 defeat from Anne Fyall.
The other quarter-final results were: Arbroath 92 Turriff 72; Coatbridge 99 Glasgow 63; Auchinleck 87 Paisley 69.