Tynecastle on cloud nine after humbling Penicuik, with proof the gap is closing
The likes of Tynecastle and Hutchison Vale have struggled to compete with the ex-Junior clubs who joined the East of Scotland League, with Bonnyrigg Rose, Tranent and Linlithgow Rose all making their way up the pyramid after establishing themselves as senior clubs.
Tynie and Hutchie have been scrapping it out for survival at the other end of the table with both clubs just doing enough to retain their top flight status.
“Everybody finds their level, and ultimately, you are only as good as your last game,” said Hart. “Fingers crossed that clubs like ourselves can start to bridge that gap, because there is a massive gap in resources between ourselves and clubs like Penicuik.
“We’ve got think outside the box and think of other way to bridge that gap. At the moment, we have done OK with it, but we know how difficult the past two seasons have been. How we do it long term is a really difficult answer, it goes beyond my involvement, it goes behind the scenes at the club and how we secure our status at this level.”
A first half hat-trick from Mackenzie Scott and a double from strike partner Ryan Cameron had hosts Tynie in command at the interval – and Hart revealed he told his side to maintain their performance level in the second half and not to take their foot off the gas.
“I told the boys to be professional and not to let their standards drop. It probably could have been a couple more in all honesty.
“It was some performance, the boys were great. We are looking strong defensively; we aren’t conceding many. We competed really well and we got a wee bit of fortune when we got the penalty and the confidence just surged right through the team.
“We had five missing on Saturday, so that was a wee bit of a concern, but the guys that came into the team did brilliantly.”
Striker Russell Cairns made a home debut when he entered play at the beginning of the second half with a point to prove against the club he just joined Tynecastle from.
“Russell came on at half-time for Ethan Wynne and he had a point to prove,” said Hart. “Ethan has played a lot of minutes recently and with the first half going the way it went, I thought it was a good chance to take him off and rest him as he’s been struggling with his calf.
“The obvious choice was to put Russell on and give him some minutes because he only joined the club last week. He came on and did very well; that’s what you want to see from the subs, for the guys that aren’t in the starting eleven, is that they are ready when they are called upon. With the boys setting the standard on the pitch, it means the guys that go on, there standards have to be high.
“It was a bit of a freak result but they do happen. It’s far better to be on our end than Penicuik’s end.”