Hutchison Vale 14s cruised to an emphatic 7-1 victory over Edina Hibs in their SERYFA Division 1 clash at Bingham Park.
The win moves Vale to within a point of league leaders Leith Athletic – who have played three fixtures more than their nearest challengers.
The visitors went ahead after seven minutes when Harry Girdwood’s shot came back off the upright and Blair Conway had the simplest of tasks in knocking the ball into the net from five yards.
Hutchie increased their lead five minutes later. Jamie Docherty’s fierce drive from 20 yards hit the crossbar and Euan McGuire was on hand to turn the ball in from close range.
Edina reduced the deficit after half an hour when Liam Cubitt gathered the ball deep in Hutchie territory and his surging run was rewarded when he lashed the ball past Jamie Mitchell via the right post.
Hutchie made it 3-1 just before the break as Fareid Yassein showed great balance to control the ball before his 18-yard strike when in at the far left corner.
Girdwood’s through ball was then seized upon by Conway who showed terrific composure to dispatch the ball past goalkeeper Jordan Richardson to make it 4-1 early in the second half.
Three minutes later, Jamie Mackay made it five when he nipped in at the near post to score after a corner from the left before Conway completed his hat-trick from six yards after Mackay’s initial shot was blocked.
Substitute Euan Lee’s superb individual effort completed the rout when he weaved himself through the Edina defence to make it seven.
Hutchie coach James Combe said: “The boys performed really well coming off the back of a disappointing Scottish Cup defeat so it was great to kick the new year off with a victory.”
Rose stay in bloom
Bonnyrigg Rose 17s maintained their narrow advantage at the top of Division 2 after a 2-1 victory over Peebles FC at Poltonhall.
With rivals Fernieside and Newcraighall Leith Victoria also picking up three points on Saturday, it was a welcome victory for the Midlothian-based outfit, who remain in pole position by just a single point.
Opponents Peebles were forced into a reshuffle after losing their first-choice goalkeeper over the Christmas period, but managed to edge in front in the first half courtesy of Kieran Thrall’s close-range finish.
However, the home side did equalise when Mark Moffat was adjudged to have been upended in the Peebles’ penalty area and Bonnyrigg goalkeeper Connor Easton stepped up to convert against his opposite number.
Bonnyrigg then struck the winner midway through the second half when Euan Casey’s strike from ten yards sailed into the back of the net.
Bonnyrigg’s John Henderson was pleased with his players’ efforts and hasn’t given up hope despite Newcraighall having yet to taste defeat this season and having played three games fewer.
He said: “I think we deserved to win as we had the more clear-cut chances.
“It was a scrappy game with the wind spoiling it a bit for both sides. Newcraighall are very strong so they will take some catching but we’ve still got to play them again.”
Currie are just too hot
Currie Star 15s moved level on points at the top of Division 2 after they came from behind to defeat Spartans 2-1 at Meggetland.
Star coach Paul McGovern believes his side should have recorded a greater margin of victory, but was pleased all the same with the outcome.
McGovern said: “I thought the second-half performance was excellent. We upped the tempo where the game was played in their half and we really should have won by four or five.”
It was Kamil Sitowski who gave Spartans the advantage in the first half when he cleverly lobbed the Currie Star No.1, but Star equalised 15 minutes after the interval when Mark McGovern showed great agility to turn on the edge of the visitors’ penalty area before striking a low-driven effort into the bottom-left corner.
Star then wrapped up all three points ten minutes later when goalscorer McGovern drove down the left wing and his cross was met at the back post by recent signing Kyle Dixon, who turned the ball home.