A Demitris Stevens hat-trick inspired North Merchiston to a 4-4 comeback in an enthralling Division 1 encounter with Port o’ Leith at Saughton 3G.
Peter Reilly opened the scoring for Leith in spectacular style seven minutes in with an audacious lob over goalkeeper Sam Grey from 25 yards.
Merchie had the chance to level from the spot through Dean Millar but the striker put his effort wide shortly after.
Following that, Leith grabbed a quick-fire double to give themselves breathing space. James Frame fired in a half volley before grabbing another as he beat Grey to the ball in behind the defence to slot in.
Merchie got back in it with two goals before the break. Tyree Wilson grabbed the first before Stevens fired in off the post for 2-3.
Leith thought they were out of sight when Reilly’s volley made it 4-2 after the interval but a brace from Stevens late on, after both sides were reduced to ten men, gave Merchie a valuable point at home.
• Hermiston Vale keep up Logan run
Hermiston Vale progressed to the third round of the Logan Cup with a 4-1 win over Armadale Thistle at Wood Park. Vale went ahead ten minutes in when Grant Smith won the ball at the heart of the Thistle defence before squaring it to Jamie Horton to tap in for 1-0.
Although the first goal was partly the fault of the Armadale defence, there was little the hosts could do to prevent Hermiston going two up. After good build up, Smith received the ball in the area before riding the challenge from Michael Hughes and slotting home to double his team’s lead.
From the restart and out of nowhere, Armadale had a goal to their name. They pressed straight up the park and Frazer Macintyre was allowed space to shoot in the box to give his side some hope in the tie.
That hope was soon extinguished before the break though when Dale Horribine bent a 25-yard-free kick round the wall and in to restore Vale’s two-goal cushion.
After the interval Vael’s Daniel Kitson got down the right flank to cross for Horton to volley in for 4-1.
• Sandys into Champions Cup final
Holders Sandys secured their spot in the final of the Champions Cup with a 3-1 win over Clermiston Star at Castlebrae.
Last season’s winners caught Clermiston on the break early on. Graeme Mills fired high into the net from close range. Sandys grabbed a second before half-time. Darren Hainey leapt like a salmon to nod in from a corner.
After the break Clermiston began to make inroads and they pulled one back when Lee Heinemier tapped in from close range, finishing off a sweeping move from the visitors.
Tam Crease ended Clermiston’s cup dreams late on however. With Star pressing up the park in search of an equaliser, Sandys broke and Crease finished off the move with a neat finish one-on-one past the man between the sticks.
Sandys go on to face Shotts Victoria in the final.
They beat Craigshill Thistle on penalties in the other semi-final after it finished 2-2 after extra time.