Lowland League: Spartans close gap with five star show

Posted on Tuesday, October 3rd, 2017

Adam Corbett netted his first goal since graduating from the Under 20s whilst Alan Brown celebrated his 150th game in Spartans colours with a fine strike as Dougie Samuel’s side narrowed the gap at the top of the table with a 5-0 victory over Vale of Leithen.

Blair Carswell returned between the sticks and the Captain’s armband was reunited with Mikey Herd as Spartans rung the changes from Saturday’s win in the Borders for Tuesday night’s clash against the same side who were last to visit North Edinburgh, less than two weeks ago on Scottish Cup duty.

Come the end of the ninety minutes, the outcome was to be the same, however the Innerleithen outfit caused the hosts some awkward moments in the early stages with Blair Carswell having to look sharp to keep out a glancing header from former Ainslie Park favourite Chris Anderson.

Vale were left to rue that miss when their fortunes took a turn for the worst when Steven Lynch got first dibs on the showers after just 22 minutes when he was adjudged to be ‘last man’ when curtailing the dynamic pace of Blair Atkinson who raced towards the penalty box.  Following the dismissal, the resultant free kick from Craig Stevenson hit the bar only for the rebound to be headed back across goal by Adam Corbett who saw his looping header outfox Kieran Beveridge and find the net.

There was further opportunity for the home support to warm their hands when they roundly applauded a fine move involving Jamie Dishington and Mikey Herd, with the latter whipping in a cross that was just knocked over by Ross Allum under pressure from his marker.

The numerical advantage started to tell and on the 34th minute, Scott Wilson had a second bite at crossing into the packed sixed yard box following a cleared corner and it was Blair Atkinson who had a leap of faith to get in between the towering defenders to head home.

With the respective half time team-talks running through the managers minds, Spartans went three up with a minute to go before the oranges.

Blair Atkinson simply tormented his man, twisting, turning and then forcing a foul inside the six yard box for the easiest decision of the night for Referee Stewart Luke.  Ross Allum stepped up and despite Beveridge getting a glove to the ball, it wasn’t enough to prevent Spartans going in three up at the interval.

HT: Spartans 3-o Vale of Leithen

Vale’s Anderson took up his residency in the dug out for the second half to direct proceedings from the touchline whilst there were no changes within the home personnel as the players returned to the field.

Just nine minutes into the half, Spartans further extended their lead and it came in some style.  A break from defence to attack saw Scott Wilson embark on a lung bursting run, even more so with a hoolie blowing at pitch level, from just inside the Vale half.  His pace was just about enough to outdo the chasing pack and he finished with aplomb, seeing the ball hit off the base of the post and nestle in the bottom corner of the opposite side of the net.

Blair Carswell may have been the quieter of the two keepers throughout, but it was a second telling save that earned further praise as he denied former Spartan Sean Stewart from grabbing a consolation strike from close range.

Spartans scored nine minutes into the half and with the same length of time remaining, they topped off a good night at the office when Alan Brown put the icing on the footballing cherry when he delivered a pin-point shot with the outside of the boot beyond Beveridge.

FT: Spartans 5-0 Vale of Leithen

Malt and Hops Man of the Match: Jamie Dishington

Spartans: Carswell, Herd (Archibald 67), Stevenson, Corbett, Tolmie (Nixon 59), Wilson, Atkinson, McFarland, Allum (Khutsishvili 59), Dishington, Brown.  Subs: (Unused) Greenhill, Thomson, Guthrie, Stobie.




Next Fixture

Date: Friday 17th May
Opponent: Dumbarton
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: Play-Off Final 2nd Leg
Kick off: 7.30pm

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