Craigie and Uni lead the race to reach League Cup

Euan Campbell', right, scored for Leith Athletic. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Euan Campbell', right, scored for Leith Athletic. Picture: Ian Georgeson

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In THE race for qualification for the Central Taxis League Cup, Craigroyston and Edinburgh University propelled themselves into pole positions for an automatic passage to the knock-out stages

Leith Athletic and Easthouses Lily, meanwhile, both won to give themselves a fighting chance of reaching the play-offs.

At St Mark’s Park, Craigie swept aside the challenge of Heriot-Watt University, winning 3-0 and climbing to the summit of Section C.

“All in all, it’s a good result for us,” said Craigie assistant manager Gary Sutherland. “Some of our play was excellent. The players worked really hard and got their reward.”

Mark Hendrie notched a first-half double – the latter via a penalty kick – and Nicky Rendell capped a fine attacking display by Craigie with a third for the hosts in the second half.

Leith jumped ahead of Heriot-Watt and into third place – the second play-off position – by winning 4-2 at Burntisland Shipyard, the visitors’ goals coming from Chris Wright, Kerr Allan, Mark Leslie and Euan Campbell.

Leith boss Derek Riddel said: “Considering the conditions and the fact the pitch was bordering on unplayable, I’m delighted to get three points.”

Edinburgh University rose to the top of Section B with a 4-0 win at Ormiston thanks to goals by Ross Patterson, Dan Ward, Paul Sutherland and Joe Aitken.

“We scored two fantastic goals early on and went on to control the rest of the game,” reflected Uni boss Dorian Ogunro.

Ormiston manager Murray Cheyne said: “It’s another game where we really didn’t create any opportunities, and the simple fact is we lost to a better team.”

In Section D, Easthouses Lily thumped Peebles Rovers 5-1 to hand themselves an outside hope of qualification via the play-offs.

Lily can still obtain a coveted second or third place after a hat-trick by Craig Brown and single strikes by Rory McKinnon and Ryan McQueenie featured in a comfortable victory over Peebles.

Lily boss Dave McQueenie said: “Against a very strong wind in the second half, we gave a great team performance and scored four goals to finish off a very good 2013.”