Watsonians pushed BT National League One champions Selkirk hard last night at Myreside before losing out 35-26.
Back-row Ewan Miller scored a cracking try in the first minute to put Watsonians ahead. A break was made by stand-off Andrew Chalmers and Miller was on his shoulder to take the inside pass and score from 40 metres out. Chalmers converted and it was 7-0, but it was soon 7-5 after a Selkirk try by prop Kieran Cooney.
A penalty by stand-off Rory Banks and then a well taken converted try by full-back Scott Hendrie put the visitors 15-7 to the good, but Watsonians would not be shaken off.
A converted try by scrum-half Reiss Cullen brought them to within one point before hooker Ali Ross was yellow carded and a Banks penalty made it 18-14 to the Borderers at the interval.
Despite being a man down the hosts took the lead in the 47th minute with an unconverted try by replacement hooker Aaron Johnston. Selkirk restored their advantage with a converted try by centre Craig MacDougall though, making it 25-19.
MacDougall then added another before winger Ben Robbins scored to give Watsonians a bonus point. A late Banks drop goal sealed the win for unbeaten Selkirk.
Scorers: Watsonians: Tries: Miller, Cullen, Johnston, Robbins. Cons: Chalmers 3. Selkirk: Tries: Cooney, Hendrie, C MacDougall 2. Pens: Banks 2. Drop goal: Banks. Cons: Banks 3.
Watsonians: N Montgomery; B Robbins, R Aitken, T Hart, R Greenhalgh; A Chalmers, R Cullen; M Christie, A Ross, C Sheldon, C Harvey, S Taylor, J Neary, R Drummond, E Miller. Subs: C Macleod, A Johnston, E Martin, B Walls, C Barrie.
Selkirk: S Hendrie; L MacLennan, R Nixon, C MacDougall, C McEwan; R Banks, M Davies; K Cooney, J Bett, C Graur, J Everitt, M Kissick, E MacDougall, C Marshall, A Duckett. Subs: S Tough, B Riddell, G Patterson, J McGowan, M Utteridge.
Referee: C Samson.