SECOND-HALF goals from Tollcross Thistle ensured a 4-2 victory over Newcraighall Leith Vics in the first round of the Challenge Cup.
Premier League Tollcross made their higher league status show against their Championship visitors who came into the match unbeaten having kicked off the season in fine fettle in the second tier with four victories out of five.
The hosts went ahead at Saughton just before the interval after a fairly even opening period, with Ciaran Duffy poking Tollcross into the lead when he converted Charlie Burke’s cross. Tollcross doubled their advantage through striker Jason Bell ten minutes after the restart when he gathered Stewart O’Neill’s piercing though ball and slipped it past the advancing goalkeeper.
Vics responded almost immediately through Thomas Crease when he lapped up a Tollcross clearance 35 yards from goal and sent a stunning half-volley into the top corner to leave the Tollcross keeper helpless.
Tollcross soon regained their two-goal advantage, however, after some fine build-up play. Duffy and O’Neill exchanged a sequence of passes together before the latter fired home from the edge of the area.
O’Neill then teed up Duffy for his second of the afternoon with a corner-kick which Duffy duly headed home.
Vics pulled one back on 75 minutes with the goal of the afternoon. Tadg Morriarty kicked and finished off the move from left-back, continuing his run down the left wing after exchanging a series of passes before he eventually found Leon Bell who played in Crease and his cut back was lashed home by Morriarty.
Tollcross will face the winners of Sandys and Edinburgh University in round two. Elsewhere, Barca Milton 97 beat Clermiston Star 3-1, while Spartans edged a seven-goal thriller with North Merchiston Vale 4-3. Redhall Star emerged victorious on penalties away to Linlithgow Thistle after a 3-3 draw in normal time.
• Rose refuse to wilt in Cup
Bonnyrigg Rose Amateurs booked their place in the second round of the Scottish Amateur Cup with a 3-1 replay win over Lothian East league rivals Pathhead Amateurs at Poltonhall.
Rose had rescued a replay in the original tie after clawing back a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2, but despite having home advantage this time, they found themselves a goal down early on when Darren Smith tapped home from Ray Walker’s cross.
Rose should have equalised before the break with Calumn Hunter and Graeme Taylor both spurning excellent opportunities in front of goal. Their equaliser came soon after the break, though. Chris Roxburgh’s ball found Paul Milligan and the striker ruthlessly volleyed into the net.
The hosts went ahead for the first time in the tie on the hour mark when Hunter headed home another inch-perfect Roxburgh cross.
Rose missed further chances before they made their passage into round two safe, setting up a home tie with Borders-based Ancrum, when in-form Milligan found the top corner with a lovely left-footed strike for his eighth goal in just four games.
Meadowbank continued their fine start to the new campaign with a 5-0 Logan Cup first round victory over Blackridge.
Ross Grant was on fire for the visitors as he bagged a hat-trick inside 60 minutes, while his replacement Stewart Adams came on to score a double.
Edinburgh Star booked their place in the third round of the same competition with a 3-0 home win over top-flight Fernieside. All goals came in the first period from Intermediate league leaders, with Lee Burnett (2) and strike partner Scott Coleman volleying home.