Linlithgow Rose 3
St Andrews United 1
Managerless Linlithgow proved too strong for the Fifers as they got back on track for a title challenge.
Linlithgow, led by caretaker boss Mark Bradley, should have been a couple of goals up early on but for the heroics of keeper Scott Bennett. He was beaten in the tenth minute, though, when the ball was played down the left wing to Tommy Coyne. He swept in a low cross for Roddy McLennan to swivel and drill the ball home from six yards.
Bennett showed his class again with several good saves before he was beaten again in the 25th minute. Roddy McLennan latched on to a great pass from his brother Ruari before rounding the keeper and sliding the ball into the net.
St Andrews were still in with a shout though and the Linlithgow defence was stretched as the visitors went looking for an opening. They smashed the ball against the bar just before the half-hour mark and it was a relieved Linlithgow side who heard the half time whistle.
Linlithgow increased their lead just before the hour when Andy Shirra took a Roddy McLennan cut back from the right and curled a super shot into the far corner for Linlithgow’s third.
St Andrews continued to push forward however and were rewarded in the 72nd minute when Gary Sutherland was sent crashing in the box. Kevin Fotheringham stepped up but Linlithgow keeper David Hay produced a great save to keep his goal intact. Eventually United got an end product for all their efforts though, Fotheringham getting on the scoresheet after glancing a header into the net from ten yards.
Linlithgow Rose: Hay, Rua McLennan, Nelson, Tyrrell, Walker, McArthur, Manson, Shirra, Smith, Coyne, Rod McLennan. Subs: Benton, Hagen, MacKenzie, Strickland, Fleming, Allison.
St Andrews United: Bennett, Wilson, Dignan, Gibb, McInnes, Fotheringham, McMullan, Patrick, Buchan, Sutherland, McCrae. Subs: Sloan, Porteous, Farquharson, Brash, Suttie, Tulleth, Ramsay.