Lowland League: Spartans weather late Whitehill storm to seal win

Posted on Sunday, March 25th, 2018

Dougie Samuel’s Spartans held off a spirited Whitehill Welfare late fightback to hold their nerve and secure three invaluable points on the road in the Lowland League.

Returning to the Spartans fold was Gary Cennerazzo.  The defender signing late in the week following his adventures overseas.

It was a blanket of blue sky that welcomed the teams as they took to the Ferguson Park surface that had benefitted from the recent upturn in conditions.

The hosts were the first to threaten and but for the outstretched boot of Blair Carswell, Morris would have had the Welfare fans dancing with bells on if he’d managed to find the net.

At the other end, Craig Stevenson saw his free-kick evade the Whitehill wall only for his effort to crash off the crossbar and away to safety.

Young shot stopper Ross Jardine between the home sticks was to pull off one of a host of fine saves shortly after when he leaped to his top corner to push an Alan Brown header over the bar when a goal looked the likely outcome.

The goalie could do little but look on in hope that Blair Tolmie’s towering header didn’t find the net when the defender rose above the pack in the six yard box.  Despair for Tolmie this time as the ball shaved the outside of the post.

Spartans took the lead with seven minutes left before the break.  Stephen Manson was dispossessed on the edge of the visitors 18 yard box and when the ball fell to Willie Bremner, the striker raced up the other end of the park to square to David Greenhill who found himself with time to compose himself before hitting home.

HT: Whitehill Welfare 0-1 Spartans

The second half was barely two minutes old when controversy reigned in Rosewell.  A stramash in midfield saw Referee George Calder whistle with gusto to restore order.  Moments later, Scott Maxwell started his goal scoring celebrations after a rasping strike from twenty yards found the net.  His moment in the sun was to be short lived however following lengthy deliberation between Ref and Assistant to rule the effort offside.

Spartans doubled their lead just shy of the hour mark.   Jason Stevens with a defence splitting pass to find Jamie Dishington who slid home under the advancing keeper.

Cennerazzo made his third ‘debut’ when he came on for the industrious Bremner and he almost made the ultimate impact when he teased his man on the wing before Gavin Malin hit the base of the post.

A nervy final quarter of an hour lay ahead when Guy Kerr launched a long throw into the box and Kerr Dodds was on hand to send the ball past Blair Carswell.

The Spartans keeper was in the mix minutes later when he turned a Fabio Neto net bound header over the bar following a Craig Reid free-kick.

Whitehill’s keeper was on hand, along with his sea of defenders who somehow done enough to deny an a couple of attempts in a frantic thirty seconds that would have put a more reflective bit of light between the sides.

Then at the death, another arm wrestle between Jardine and this time Cennerazzo saw the stopper come out on top once again to hold Spartans at bay.

FT: Whitehill Welfare 1-2 Spartans

Malt and Hops Man of the Match: Willie Bremner

Spartans: Carswell, Herd, Stevenson, Tolmie, Corbett, Greenhill (Malin), Brown, Dishington, Maxwell, Stevens (Thomson), Bremner (Cennerazzo).  Subs (Unused) Allum, Khutsishvili, Stobie.

Next Fixture

Date: 23/07/24
Opponent: Forfar Athletic
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: Premier Sports Cup
Kick off: 7.45pm

William Hill J-Teq EMS Solutions Ltd Spentwell JB Contracts (Scotland) Ltd
Mintbox Removals Johnstone Carmichael Consider IT Shepherd Chartered Surveyors
Sonsie Face Westwoods Health Club Mr Eion Coffee Hart Lifts
Soho IT CHAS Jim Martin