VICTORIA LOCO advanced to the second round of the Scottish Amateur Cup after edging out Danderhall Miners 3-2 at Saughton.
The opening period was scrappy, with neither side able to maintain possession for any sustained period of time.
The first chance of the game came for Danderhall in the 27th minute when Grant Aitchison headed off target from Gary Shearer’s corner.
Ten minutes later the visitors had an even better chance but Scott Cairney blasted over from five yards out after being set up by Rory Mair. It was to be a crucial miss in the context of the game.
After what was an uninspiring first half from both sides, the second half was a different story altogether, with both teams finally able to play some good football.
Victoria threatened when Shaun Dunn played a brilliant diagonal ball into the box but striker Craig Finnie, from a tight angle, could only find the side-netting with a first-time strike. Danderhall took the lead after a well-worked free-kick. Shearer, 25 yards from goal, played it short to Aitchison, who cut in from the left, shrugged off his man and buried a low shot just inside the near post from a tight angle. Danderhall’s keeper Matthew Liddle then got down well to stop a powerful strike from distance by Dunn.
At the other end, after a Danderhall breakaway, Shearer saw a 20-yard strike saved by Victoria keeper John Scott.
With 10 minutes to go it seemed like Danderhall were going to progress, but there were still a few twists and turns to come.
Victoria equalised when Finnie’s miscued shot from inside the box trickled in underneath the goalie. And moments later, Loco edged ahead in spectacular fashion. After receiving the ball in his own half, Dunn surged past the centre circle and struck a 35-yard thunderbolt which flew over the keeper’s head and into the top corner. Danderhall thought they had earned a replay when Shearer sent in a deep cross from the left flank and Mair was on hand at the back post to volley in from five yards.
It wasn’t to be the final act, though, as Victoria grabbed a 90th-minute winner. With the Danderhall defence caught napping, Finnie received the ball in the area and smashed home a powerful shot, sparking jubilant scenes in the Loco camp. Victoria face Symington Tinto AFC of the Caledonian League in the second round of the competition.
Victoria Loco: Harry Connor, Scott Davidson, Kevin Dunn, Robert Dunn, Shaun Dunn, Bryan Ferry, Craig Finnie, Danny Glancy, Sean Jackson, John Scott, Raymond Singleton, Craig Spalding, Daniel Waddell, Gary Waddell, Chris Keir, Derek Brown.
Danderhall Miners: Grant Aitchison, Darren Anderson, Scott Cairney, Callum Gailey, Gary Jervis, Michael Jervis, James Laing, Matthew Liddle, Kieran McDonald, Jamie Miller, Ashley Moss, David Buchan, Stuart Reid, Gary Shearer, Daniel Stewart, Rory Mair