Bonnyrigg Rose wrapped up a league and cup double in style, marking their last season in the Juniors by sweeping aside local rivals Newtongrange Star 5-1 in the final of the Fife and Lothians Cup.
The New Dundas Park club added to their Super League triumph by securing the Fife and Lothians crown for the first time since 2007 with a dominant showing in an historic last meeting between the two old foes before they move to the East of Scotland League next season.
Rose were rampant in an opening period which saw them surge into a four-goal half-time lead. Nitten rallied in the second half but they were merely playing for pride at that stage with Bonnyrigg players already eyeing up a welcome summer break.
Bonnyrigg boss David White paid tribute to his players for the standards they have set all season as he ended his first season in management with a double trophy haul.
“I don’t think we played great tonight, but it’s been a long season,” said White. “I’m absolutely delighted to finish with a double in my first season.
“The boys have worked their socks off all season and I couldn’t have asked any more from them. We were capable of winning more, but the hardest thing in football is winning cups and leagues, and we’ve managed to get two so I’m so grateful for that. I’m thankful for the boys and all the effort they have put in all season. They deserve this.
“We’ll have a good summer now, although the new season starts soon. The boys will get a good three or four weeks off to recharge their batteries. We are fortunate that we are keeping the majority of the squad together. The new challenges next season will be good.”
Rose, who had netted ten goals in their last two meetings against their local rivals, took just six minutes to find the opener despite an impressive start from Star.
Ewan Moyes hung up a ball to the back post for striker Keith Lough, who headed down. Star failed to clear with defender Scott Swaney and goalkeeper Keiron Renton leaving the ball for each other and Keiran McGachie nipped in to poke the ball home.
Star’s top goalscorer and left-back Dale O’Hara had Stevie McLeish’s side’s best chance of an equaliser on 20 minutes. The dead-ball specialist was just inches away from hauling Star level from a free-kick 25-yards out but saw his effort pass just wide of Rose goalkeeper Bryan Young’s left-hand post.
Rose were soon celebrating goal No.2, however, as Lough headed home Lee Currie’s corner to put them well in the ascendancy.
Two was soon three with Bonnyrigg barely into third gear, when they were awarded a penalty on 26 minutes after Swaney held onto Lough with referee Scott Lambie pointing straight to the spot. Former Star left-back Neil Martynuik netted despite Renton guessing the right way.
Star captain Renton prevented a certain fourth just before the break when he denied Lough, but he could do nothing to prevent Moyes making it four moments later when the centre-back headed in Currie’s cross.
Rose striker McGachie must have thought he had got his name on the scoresheet for No.5 just minutes into the second half. His header was goalbound, but Swaney cleared on the line.
Alistair Forster gave Star a glimmer of hope on 51 minutes when his header across goal found the bottom corner from O’Hara’s free-kick.
McGachie almost restored Rose’s four-goal advantage five minutes later, but his effort bounced inches wide of the far post.
Star suffered another blow just after the hour mark when captain Renton was forced to go off after being unable to continue due to a shoulder injury, with Jordan Dunsmore replacing him.
Opposite number Young was forced into action next, with Star striker George Hunter glancing a header goalwards from veteran midfielder Darren Smith’s cross – the keeper producing the goods when required to halt any comeback attempt.
Dunsmore hadn’t made a save since entering the field of play, but he was picking the ball out of his net nine minutes from time when substitute frontman Kyle Wilson ran in one-on-one before slotting low into the net.
By then, the red and white ribbons were already tied onto the fine old trophy which stand-in captain Jonny Stewart and regular skipper Kerr Young, who missed out through suspension, held aloft at full-time.
Bonnyrigg Rose: Young, Brown, Martynuik, Horne, Moyes, Stewart, Turner (Nelson), Gray (Hoskins), McGachie, Lough (Wilson), Currie
Newtongrange Star: Renton (Dunsmore), Melvin, Swaney, Lawson, O’Hara, Smith, Bracks, Porteous (S.Scott), Wilson (K.Scott), Forster, Hunter