The champagne was flowing at New Dundas Park last night as Bonnyrigg Rose were crowned Super League champions after a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Camelon.
Rose needed just a point to clinch the title, the Midlothian side having a far superior goal difference over sole challengers Kelty Hearts, who would have needed a barrowload of goals in their final matches to have any hope of catching the league leaders.
Goals from Ruaridh Donaldson, Lewis Turner and Andrew Kidd secured all three points for the home side, who dominated from start to finish.
It’s been a fantastic first season in charge for boss Robbie Horn – the former Berwick Rangers assistant having defied all expectations to land Rose’s first championship crown since 2012 and with it a place in next season’s William Hill Scottish Cup.
“It’s brilliant to finally get over the line. It feels like it has been a long time coming,” said Horn. “It was just a wee bit edgy last night. It took us a while to get going, their keeper was making saves and it took us a while to get the first goal.
“It will be a great experience [the William Hill Scottish Cup] and it’s prestige for the club as well. Hopefully, the club will make a bit of money as well out of it and you never know, we could go on a run like Linlithgow or East Kilbride – that would be the dream.”
Midfielder Lewis Turner almost gave the home side the perfect start after three minutes. Put through by striker Keiran McGachie, he showed neat feat to orchestrate a chance for himself but saw his shot palmed wide by visiting goalkeeper David Grant.
Scott Gray then shot just wide of the top corner as Rose maintained their early momentum before top goalscorer Wayne McIntosh saw a shot cleared off the line.
Despite dominating territory and possession, it took the home side until the stroke of half-time to finally make the breakthrough, but it was a goal well worth waiting for.
There appeared to be little on as left-back Donaldson picked the ball up some 25 yards from goal, but the defender surprised everyone as he sent a wicked strike via his left boot which careered past Grant and into the top corner.
McGachie looked to have doubled Rose’s advantage three minutes after the interval but, after the referee consulted with his near-side linesman, the goal was chalked off for offside.
Rose had another goal ruled out for the same offence after 56 minutes, McIntosh with the ball in the net but he too had strayed past the visiting defence prior to being put through.
The crucial second goal arrived five minutes later, however. McIntosh found Lewis Turner with a piercing ball through the heart of the Camelon defence and Turner produced an exquisite finish across goal.
Rose made sure of all three points six minutes from time. Substitute Jonathan Brown found fellow sub Kidd, who from 16 yards out, sent a bullet header past the helpless Grant.
Bonnyrigg Rose: Andrews, Horne (Brown), Donaldson, Stewart, Young (Moyes), Hoskins, Gray, Turner (Kidd), McGachie, Nelson, McIntosh.
Camelon: Grant, Bell, Devlin (Scott), Tierney, Benton, Fotheringham, Scobbie, Taylor, Flynn, Collumbine, Wright.