Lowland League round-up: Second-half salvo boosts Spartans

Chris Townsley scored twice for Spartans
Chris Townsley scored twice for Spartans
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Defeats for Preston and Students

Spartans 4

Gretna 2008 1

A FRANTIC four-goal 15-minute spell in the second half saw Spartans triumph. Spartans looked to turn their dominance into goals and it was the crossbar that came to the aid of Gretna as Blair Tolmie rattled it with the best effort of the first half. The deadlock was broken in the 63rd minute via Jamie Dishington, who scored after patient midfield play. A free-kick from near the corner flag by Herd was met powerfully by the head of Chris Townsley, who bulleted home. Spanish sub Igor Gabiola set up Broque Watson – who managed to stay upright despite attempts to pull him down – to drill home. It was almost a carbon copy from Townsley to make it four as he headed home from a free-kick. Gretna grabbed a consolation from the spot when McCartney stepped up to score after a Herd foul inside the box.

Spartans: Carswell, Herd, Thomson, Tolmie, Townsley, Greenhill, Trialist, Maxwell, Murray (Watson 65), Dishington, Malone (Gabiola 77) Sub (Unused) Gilpin

Gretna 2008: Leighfield, Wood, Hunter, Rea, Dickinson, Rudd, Brannan, Hope, McCartney, Simpson, Telfer. Subs: Studaholme, Murray, Neil, Inglis, Armstrong.

Gala Fairydean Rovers 3

Preston Athletic 1

Preston’s poor run continued at Netherdale as luck deserted the Panners, who twice the woodwork whilst the scores were level. A couple of golden chances were also spurned and Gala made the most of the let-offs to secure the points. Gala opened the scoring on ten minutes as Darren Smith converted a spot-kick after Ross Colquhoun had fouled Stuart Noble, Preston equalised quickly with a well-worked move. Liam Todd fed Danny O’Rourke whose cross found Fabio Neto to guide his header home. The crucial second came on 70 minutes as a Preston attack broke down and Gala drove forward with numbers. After two good blocks by Craig Pennycuick, the ball fell to Smith to drive home. The third near the end came from slack play by Preston allowing a corner to be cut back to Lee Stephen, who lashed home unchallenged from the edge of the box.

Gala Fairydean Rovers: Wright, Stephen, Waugh, Main, Herdman, Watson (Miller), Smith, Bonnington (Nicol), Noble, McColm (Simpson), Aitchison. Subs: Windram, Langford, Hope.

Preston Athletic: Pennycuick, Cowan, Cochrane, Colquhoun, McLeod, Todd, O’Rourke, Barclay, Neto, Erskine (Lawson), Douglas (Amagou). Subs: J.Cochrane, Baines, K Park, Innes, Ritchie.

Hawick Royal Albert 4

Edinburgh University 3

The students were edged out by Lowland League newcomers Hawick. The visitors also had striker Nathan Evans sent off after the break for two bookable offences. Uni found themselves 3-1 down at the interval as goals from Kris Mitchell and a Josh Morris brace had the hosts firmly in command. Jack Guthrie notched a solo effort for the students in the first half. James McPartlin increased the home side’s advantage after the break and, despite late efforts from Max Verkaik and a second effort from Guthrie, the Borders club held on to claim a valuable three points.

Hawick Royal Albert: Rankin, Stevenson, Spence, Smeaton, Saunderson, Conaghan, Pettigrew (Robertson 80), McPartlin, Morris, Mitchell (Boyd 86), McInally. Subs not used: Hunter.

Edinburgh University: Tait, Scott, Smith (Swinney 45), Irvine, Swan, Verkaik, Piatti, Murray, Guthrie, McCrory-Irving, Evans.