NEWTONGRANGE STAR were expected to cruise into the third round of the Junior Cup but Haddington had other ideas and pushed the Super League leaders all the way eventually losing 4-3 in a penalty shoot-out after a 1-1 draw.
In an entertaining first half both sides had chances to get the vital opener with Paul Tansey going close for Newtongrange whilst keeper Keiron Renton made a superb point-blank save to thwart Haddington’s Sean Connaghan.
With only three minutes gone in the second half Renton was called into action again with a fine stop from Jack Wilson. A period of sustained pressure from the visitors saw them take the lead when Stevie McDonald prodded the ball home after a goalmouth scramble.
The lead was short lived however as Sean Jamieson levelled the scores heading home a Chris King cross. Going into the last 15 minutes and King was denied by the post when, from 20 yards out, he almost scored with a brilliantly taken free-kick. The pace of the game continued right to the final whistle before the dreaded penalty kick shoot-out decided the outcome.
With both teams having missed two spot kicks it went to sudden death with the crucial winner coming from Star’s Scott Gibson.
Newtongrange Star: Renton, Swaney, Deland, Tolmie, Gibson, Shields (Cherrie 73), Tansey, Gillon, O’Reilly (Forster 70), King (Cropley 85), Jamieson. Subs: Noble, Amos.
Haddington: McQueen, M Lynch, Noble, Gallagher, Motion, Bracks, Waugh, Wilson, McDonald, Connaghan, Ponton. Subs: Carter, Ferguson, J Lynch, Martin, Johnston.