Blackburn United 4 (Millar 44mins, Heath 65mins, Garrad 80mins & 120mins)
Stoneyburn 3 (Hendry 7mins, Scott 24mins & 87mins)
Stoneyburn got off to a bright start in the seventh minute when a defensive mix-up allowed HENDRY to nip in ahead of his marker and knock the ball out of goalkeeper Craig Saunders’ hand to give the Fulshie the lead. With Stoneyburn continuing to impose themselves on the game, Blackburn pressed forward to try and nab a goal and won a corner-kick despite protestations that they felt a stonewall penalty should have been awarded in the twenty fourth minute. It was the Fulshie who capitalised on the set piece though by breaking forward on the counter from the corner with Robertson drawing Saunders out before squaring to SCOTT for the centre forward to tap into an empty net. In fact, the closest United came to scoring arrived from Stoneyburn’s ex-Blackburn man McConnell when his clearance came too close to the net for Craig’s liking with the goalkeeper forced to parry it over the bar just to be safe. The Burnie eventually reduced the arrears just before half-time when a free-kick was lifted onto the head of Marcus MILLAR who nodded back across the face of goal and home to grant Blackburn the momentum a minute before the break.
The hosts were much improved from then on, but Stoneyburn were resolute in their defending, sensing the opportunity to cause a cup shock. However, United deservedly drew level after an unfortunate error from Craig which saw the ball fall at the feet of Calum HEATH who scooped the ball past the despairing goalkeeper in the sixty fifth minute. Inside the final twenty minutes Blackburn had the ball in the net twice more, first when Richie Hutton rounded the ‘keeper to slot home and then when Andy McQuillan lashed into the roof of the net, but were denied by the offside flag on each occasion. With ten minutes to go though, GARRAD believed he had snatched the winner for Blackburn after his low strike from the edge of the box found the bottom left hand corner of Craig’s net to seemingly complete the comeback. However, there was another twist in the eighty seventh minute. Determined play saw Lyall Cameron lose out on the Blackburn right and when a near post ball arrived at the feet of SCOTT he tapped it home to send the game into extra-time.
With the cold weather beginning to bite, the tension was palpable as the clock ticked closer to what seemed to be an inevitable penalty shoot-out but GARRAD flipped the script in the final moments when the ball fell to him from a free-kick and his half-volley was whacked firmly over the line with the aid of a deflection to send Blackburn into the third round of the South Challenge Cup.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Cameron, Millar, Mildren, Drummond, Meikle, Heath (Devine 92), Howe (Browne 66), Sweeney (McQuillan 61), Garrad, Smith (Hutton 56) Subs (not used): McClung, Kane, Kidd
Stoneyburn line-up: Craig, Calvey, Guatella, McConnell, Gallagher, Hendry, Brady, Brown, Scott, Donaldson, Robertson Subs: Hislop, McLay, Mooney, Wilson, Young, Mackie
Referee: Mr. Robert Thomson
Assistants: Mr. Boise Allan & Mr. Jack Leslie
Blackburn United 1 (Garrad 87mins)
Linlithgow Rose 2 (Docherty 4mins, Stowe 83mins)
United continued an unwanted trend of losing early goals when a corner from the right caused a degree of panic in the centre of the six yard box and when the ball couldn’t be adequately cleared and spun towards DOCHERTY he had the simplest of tasks to clip it past an unsighted Craig Saunders. Despite Rose piling on the pressure and moving the ball quickly in search of a second goal it was Blackburn who came closest next, Dominic Kane firing a twenty yarder just past the right hand post before a back post cross picked out Marcus Millar to head down to the feet of Calum Heath but his shot was saved by Shaw at the bottom right hand corner. Linlithgow, though, were clever and lively and Sneddon set-up Docherty for a snap shot the crept narrowly past.
Seven minutes after the resumption a Heath free-kick found the chest of John Drummond but when the ball dropped invitingly for Laurie Devine he could only hook it over the top. At the other end Stowe hit the right hand byeline and cut an inviting ball back into the path of Sneddon but his shot was saved by the feet of Saunders before the same player had a pop from the angle of the box that flew over. With just under twenty minutes remaining a speculative ball over the top found Jack Garrad running onto it at the edge of the Rose area but he was sent flying by an ill-timed thrash at the ball by Shaw, who had rushed from his line, that instead caught the United players ankles and referee Mr. Calder had little option to brandish the red card at the Linlithgow No.1. Blackburn couldn’t make anything from the resultant free-kick though and, despite the mad disadvantage, it was the Prestonfield men who scored again, substitute Tommy Coyne robbing young Jack Sayers of the ball and threading a perfectly weighted pass through to STOWE who made no mistake in picking his spot behind Saunders. However, United were still causing problems and when Saunders long clearance was quickly controlled on the chest of GARRAD the young Hamilton Accies loanee was alert enough to see McMinn had advanced a few yards from his line and brilliantly lobbed him from all of forty yards. Right on time Blackburn had the ball in the net again when Howe’s pin-point cross was expertly thumped home by Richie Hutton but the near side linesman had adjudged him to have strayed marginally offside.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Sayers, Millar, Mildren, Drummond, Kane (Howe 66), Heath (Smith 81), Meikle, Garrad, Devine (Sweeney 75), Hutton subs (not used): Baillie, Ferris, McClung, Clements
Linlithgow Rose line-up: Shaw, Thomson, Thom, Stowe, Docherty, McKenzie, Hare, Ogilvie, McMullan, Bremner, Sneddon Subs: McMinn, Lawrie, Coyne, Dublin-Green, Allan
Referee: Mr. George Calder
Assistants: Mr. Calum Doyle & Mr. Gianluca Marini
Blackburn United 2 (Heath 51, Garrad 64)
Musselburgh Athletic 2 (Jeffries 33, White 71)
Richie Hutton created the first chance of the game on 8 minutes when he flashed a shot goalwards which was deflected wide. From the resulting corner a John Drummond effort from the edge of the area was beaten away by Ross Mccrae in the Musselburgh goal.
On the 19 minute mark a run down the right by Jack Sayers saw him push the ball past Orru and fire in a low cross which just evaded the inrushing Danny Campbell. It was the latter who then had an attempt a few minutes later which flew just over.
The opening goal came on 33 minutes when a short corner was cleared but fell nicely to Josh Jeffries unmarked on the edge of the box and he fired as tremendous shot into the roof of the net to give the visitors the lead, which remained that way at the half.
Blackburn were on level terms six minutes after the restart when Callum Heath intercepted a loose ball, strode forward and then unleashed a daisycutter from 20 yards which flew into the bottom corner of Mccraes net. Three minutes later a Daryll Meikle free kick was met by Danny Campbell whose header flew inches wide.
On 64 minutes Blackburn took the lead when Hutton fed Heath wide right who bore down on goal but Mccrae got down well to touch it behind for a corner. From the corner, Mccrae punched the ball clear to Jack Garrad who fired the ball back in through a forrest of legs into the net.
However the lead lasted only seven minutes. A thrown in by Sayers deep in his own half found Dominic Kane but the ball was intercepted by O’Kane who played the ball forward and it eventually fell to Bradley White who curled a shot beyond Saunders.
Musselburgh began to dominate possession without creating any real clear-cut chances and the Blackburn defence held firm. Danny Campbell appeared to have a strong shout for a penalty after Mccrae bundled him over in the six yard box but the claims were waved away by referee Snedden. Deep into injury time a Callum Heath effort from distance flew just over the bar and that brought an end to a very competitive game.
Blackburn United: Craig Saunders, Jack Sayers, Marcus Millar, James Mildren, John Drummond, Dominic Kane, Callum Heath, Daryll Meikle, Jack Garrad (Lyal Cameron 86), Danny Campbell (Laurie Devine 81), Richie Hutton. Unused subs: Keiran Sweeney, David Howe, Lennon Smith, Baley Ferris, Johnny Clements (GK)
Musselburgh Athletic: Ross Mccrae, Callum Davidson, Jordan Orru, Declan O’Kane, Josh Jeffries (Lloyd Fiddler 69), Conor Thomson (Liam Gregory 69), Bradley Whyte, Liam Reid, Dean Ballantyne, Darren Downie (Jordan Smith 80), Greg Page. Unused subs: Jackie Myles, John McManus, Joe Hamill, Ethan Wynne
Referee: Iain Snedden
Assistants: Danny Mackinnon, Konrad Spalony
Blackburn United 1 (Millar 57mins)
Crossgates Primrose 4 (Aitken 9mins, McDonald 44mins, Muirhead 80mins, Ritchie 84mins)
The first real opening of the match for either side brought the first goal of the game when a delivery from the left found Lawrie lurking at the back post and when his shot drew a great double save from Craig Saunders in the United goal the ball could only be subsequently half cleared and when it fell to AITKEN on the edge of the area he fired into the bottom right hand corner. Lawrie then had a curling effort held as the visitors pushed for a second. At the other end a Danny Campbell cross was headed onto the roof of the net by John Drummond before, a minute from the break, Primrose doubled their advantage, McDONALD finding just enough time and space inside the six yard box to turn and hit a loose ball past Saunders.
Lawrie had a pop from distance early in the second half and Archie Campbell was denied by a Drummond block but it was blackburn who found the net moments later when, after Marcus Millar had nodded against the bar from a Danny Campbell corner, a second successive corner, this time taken by Calum Heath, saw Drummond outjump his marker to head down for MILLAR to bundle over the line. Graham then set up Muirhead for a shot that crept past the right hand post as the visitors re-established themselves in the game and, with only ten minutes remaining, they restored their two goal lead when a long ball launched forward saw Saunders advance too far off his line and MUIRHEAD took full advantage to place the ball beyond him and into the net. With the points secure, Crossgates added further to the scoreline when a Muirhead mishit fell perfectly for RITCHIE to slam home from point blank range.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Sayers, Drummond, Cameron, Millar, Howe, Heath, Browne, McQuillan (Sweeney 70), Campbell, Hutton (Devine 70) Subs (not used): Mildren, Smith, Ferris, King
Crossgates Primrose line-up: Robertson, Muirhead, Brown, Graham, McAteer, McDonald, Ritchie, Aitken, S.Lawrie, Campbell, Graham Subs: Sawers, McGuire, Hunter, Breeze, McKenzie, N.Lawrie
Referee: Mr. Jordan Curran
Assistants: Mr. Dale Kerr & Mr. Keiran Martin
Blackburn United 1 (McQuillan 16mins)
Rothes 2 (Robertson 62mins, Hyde 90mins)
United got off to a fast start against their opponents, who had opened the Highland League season with an eight game unbeaten run and almost took the lead seven minutes in when a Laurie Devine cross was deflected onto the bar by Rothes defender Finnis with Andy McQuillan heading over the bar from the resulting corner-kick. McQUILLAN would make no mistake less than ten minutes later though when he made the most of some poor defending to fire across McCarthy and into the bottom corner for the opening goal. Rothes settled into the game following the slow start but a resolute United defensive display limited them to half-chances in the first-half with a McRitchie header from a corner that went wide being the closest they came to levelling things up. At the other end, McQuillan broke clear but lacked the pace to outrun the defence while both David Howe and Calum Heath fired straight at the keeper from distance.
The second-half was near total one-way traffic in favour of the away side. Craig Saunders produced a tremendous save on fifty four minutes to deny Stark when he raced through on the right while the dangerous Cormack and Milne both went close. It appeared to be just a matter of time before the equaliser would come and it duly arrived on sixty two minutes when Cormack’s great play on the left flank led to ROBERTSON rolling the ball into the net from close range. Cormack almost headed the Highlanders in front three minutes later from a corner-kick while Gunn also went close when firing just wide moments later. Having been under the cosh for some time, Blackburn began to get a foothold back into the game with the pattern of play being two resolute defences with chances now at a premium. A goalmouth scramble nine minutes from time could easily have seen United turn the ball home for the lead but it wasn’t to be and with a replay seeming certain, Rothes struck with HYDE, on the park a mere five minutes, proving to be the match-winner as he tapped home at the back post.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Sayers, Lawrie, Drummond, Millar, Meikle, Heath (Kane 78), Browne, McQuillan, Howe (Gribben 85), Devine (Smith 72) Subs (not used): McClung, Sweeney, Ferris, King
Rothes line-up: McCarthy, Stark, Finnis, McRitchie, Milne, Robertson, Gunn, Pollock, Harkness, Cormack, A.MacKenzie Subs: Johnstone, Browne, Davies, Wilson, Hyde, I.MacKenzie
Referee: Mr. Steven Reid
Assistants: Mr. Steven McLelland & Mr. James Taylor
Blackburn United 2 (Heath 19mins, Campbell 44mins)
Easthouses Lily 1 (Russell 21mins)
A third appearance in the Scottish Cup for United began in positive fashion when Danny Campbell did well with a piece of hold up play that allowed him to lay the ball off to the supporting James Mildren but his shot was held easily enough by Hay in the visiting goal. Shortly thereafter Campbell was again the creator, slipping in Richie Hutton on the right but his pop was saved by Hay down low to his left. At the other end Russell got his head on a cross to set up Beattie but he couldn’t get his own header on target. The opening goal then duly arrived on nineteen minutes and it was Campbell who once more was at the heart of it, taking a long clearance down brilliantly and playing in Callum HEATH on the right who chopped his stride to create the space to curl an absolute beauty past Hay and into the left corner of the net. However, the lead was short lived and RUSSELL was strong to hold off a challenge as he barrelled into the box to pick his spot in the bottom right hand corner. A looped Campbell header from a Hutton cross was touched over as Blackburn looked to re-establish the lead but it was a terrific one on one black by Craig Saunders that prevented McBeth squeezing the visitors in front. However, just before the interval the United lead was indeed restored, Keiran Sweeney setting off on a run down the left from inside his own half and sliding a pass across the face of the box to CAMPBELL who took a touch and thumped a shot across Hay and into the bottom left.
The second half was more of a tame affair with Blackburn happy to allow the men from East Lothian possession without too much in the way of clear cut chances arriving, other than Russell curling an effort wide of the left hand post. Substitute Darren Gribben then presented the Lily rearguard with some problems without testing Hay too much. With some six minutes remaining both sides were reduced to ten men when Beattie lunged in on James Mildren with his boot up and studs showing, catching the full back high on the shin and causing a bit of heated pushing and shoving in the aftermath. Once referee Mr. Soutar was able to calm matters, his red card was deservedly brandished at original culprit Beattie as well as Campbell who had been first to take exception to his tackle. Once play resumed the final minutes were negotiated easily enough by Blackburn to progress into the first round proper of the national cup competition for the first time.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Mildren, Lawrie, Cameron, Millar, Browne, Heath (Gribben 82), Howe, Sweeney (McClung 86), Campbell, Hutton Subs (not used): Young, Ferris, Baillie, King, Clements
Easthouses Lily line-up: Hay, Smith, Whyte, McQueenie, Meikle, Russell, McBeth, Hunter, Elliot, Janczyk, Beattie Subs: Sives, Kearney, Lennie, Connell, Brown, Currie, McDermott, Amos
Referee: Mr. Greg Soutar
Assistants: Mr. Ralph Gordon & Mr. Sean Duff
Blackburn United 1 (Drummond 47mins)
Dunbar United 1 (Jones 39mins)
A David Howe corner found John Drummond rising highest in the opening minutes but his header drifted past before Drummond was penalised at the other end, a free-kick award that allowed Neave to hit an effort past the right hand post. However, six minutes before the interval the visitors did squeeze ahead, Berry lifting a ball over the top and into the left of the box where JONES was onto it in a flash to hit a terrific half volley into the top left hand corner. Keiran Sweeney, Richie Hutton and Kyle McClung then moved the ball well down the United left but when the delivery eventually arrived in the box Baley Ferris couldn’t quite get his shot away, although Sweeney’s acrobatic follow up did test Laing.
Two minutes after the resumption Blackburn did pull level though, Howe’s free-kick being met by Marcus Millar and when his header was blocked DRUMMOND managed to scramble the ball over the line. Two corners in quick succession for the Seasiders eventually created a shooting opportunity for Thomson whose twenty yarder was saved by Craig Saunders. Ferris was clever on the hour mark to nut meg Thomson and curl an effort just over as United pushed for a winner and the young striker went close again thereafter, nodding past the left hand upright after Millar had headed a Howe free-kick back across the face of goal. A Lyall Cameron header was then blocked before Dunbar’s McLaren could only head a Jones cross onto the roof of the net to ensure the points were shared.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Sayers, Drummond, Cameron, Millar, Kane (Duncan 82), Hutton, Howe, Sweeney (McLeod 71), Ferris (Baillie 88), McClung Subs (not used): Osborne, Landels, Young
Dunbar United line-up: Laing, Purves, McFarlane, Thomson, Berry, McLaren, Handling, Jones, Neave, Weir, Whitson Subs: Ingram, Devlin, Johnstone, Edmond, Fairnie, Hay, Fleming
Referee: Mr. John Stewart
Assistants: Mr. Finlay Anderson & Mr. Steven King
Blackburn United 2 (Lawrie 15mins & 52mins)
Broxburn Athletic 4 (Allum 27mins, Greenhill 38mins, Ross 48mins & 83mins)
The first local league derby of the Premier League season kicked-off in bright sunshine and it was the visitors who exerted some early pressure without unduly troubling Craig Saunders in the United goal while Andy McQuillan and Danny Campbell were beginning to look troublesome at the other end with more limited possession. With fifteen minutes on the clock and the play beginning to find itself more in the Broxburn half that the home one, United found the breakthrough when McQuillan controlled the ball with a wonderful first touch and slipped it to Campbell whose shot was blocked out as far as Richie Hutton whose subsequent run into the left of the box was brought to an end by a clumsy tackle. From the resultant penalty Marty LAWRIE slammed the ball home off the underside of the crossbar. Minutes later the Albyn Park men were almost level but, from Gillen’s cross Binnie’s point-blank header was quite brilliantly pushed onto the bar by Saunders. However, the equaliser was only delayed by another ten minutes and when Ross’s corner was won in the air by Wright all sorts of consternation in the heart of the Blackburn defence ended when ALLUM popped up to bundle the ball over the line. With United then forced into an early attacking change when Campbell went off injured, as the visitors had been defensively moments earlier when Harrison replaced Townsley, Broxburn took advantage when a Gillen cross from the right evaded everyone bar GREENHILL whose half-volley crept past Saunders despite the big ‘keeper almost stopping it with a strong hand. Right on forty five minutes McQuillan found himself clear on goal with only Wallace to beat but the visitors No.1 made himself big enough to block his shot before, a minute into added time, Dominic Kane hit a powerful half-volley that Wallace saved at full stretch.
Athletic were quickly out of the traps after the interval and eased further ahead when ROSS hit a cross in from wide on the right that perhaps caught on the wind but certainly deceived Saunders in the home goal, looping over his head and finding a spot in high in the net behind him. At the other end, Laurie Devine darted in off the right and weaved his way past several tackles on his way into the box only to be impeded as he lifted his parting shot over the top. After consulting with his assistant, referee Mr. MacLean pointed to the spot and LAWRIE converted another immaculate effort to reduce the leeway back to one. Ten minutes later it really could have been all-square again when Davide Howe and Richie Hutton linked for a cross to the back post where an unmarked McQuillan couldn’t quite get any contact on it with the goal gaping. Substitute Keiran Sweeney then got in on the right thanks to a Devine pass but Wallace held his shot. The visitors too were posing a threat and Tait was unlucky to see his curling effort whizz narrowly over. On the eighty minute mark Lennon Smith played a one-two with Howe to hit an effort just wide but it was at the other end that the sixth an final goal of a keenly contested derby arrived, Greenhill and Binnie linking to put ROSS through and he made no mistake, angling a cracker home from around twelve yards out on the right. With just four minutes remaining what had been a competitive but fair game boiled over when Donaldson went in wildly on Smith in front of the Blackburn dugout and when the youngster reacted furiously a melee of players had to be separated and when order had been restored both me were shown the red car, as was Townsley for racing from the Broxburn dugout to become involved. In the sixth minute of added time yet more controversy was visited on the afternoon when Ross went down on the edge of the box with what appeared to be little if any contact and the referee somehow contrived to flash a second yellow card at a mystified Lawrie despite his and others protestations including, it seemed, Ross himself.
Blackburn United line-up: Saunders, Sayers, Lawrie, Mildren (Browne 46), Millar, Kane (McClung 71), Devine (Smith 75), Howe, McQuillan (Ferris 71), Campbell (Sweeney 35), Hutton Subs (not used): Fleming, King
Dundonald Bluebell line-up: Wallace, Gillen, Donaldson, Wright, Townsley, Nicol, Newall, Greenhill, Allum, Binnie, Ross Subs: Harrison, Hutchison, Cowley, Barker, Tait, Ireland, Donoghue
Referee: Mr. Simon MacLean
Assistants: Mr. Cameron Doyle & Ms. Emmanuelle Hingant