My thanks to John Fraser for the match report - sorry no photographs this week.
Rovers: Kevin Smith, Brian Dempster, Alistair Gray, Andrew Rollo, Brian Roberts, Barry Smith, Paul Duncan, Lee Dair,
James Adam, Craig Smart and Brett Halley. Subs: Shaun Graham, Cumbie Bowers, Lee Sutherland, Scott Logan and Scott Chalmers.
Mark Ramage, Kenny Munro, Scott Gibb, Craig Meikle, Brian Foster, Kevin Milne, Ryan Gay, Keith Barr, Martin Cameron, Graeme
Cole and Darren Moonie. Subs: Colin McDonald, Bryan Ryrie, Matthew Lynch, Graham Gallagher and Kris Steel.
Ballingry Rovers 3 Penicuik 2
Penicuik made several personnel
and positional changes following their defeat last Saturday at Carnoustie for this first round Fife and Lothians Cup tie.
Brian Foster, Scott Gibb and Martin Cameron returned to the line up for Penicuik’s first ever meeting with Ballingry
Rovers who were on usual lines and in the middle of a good run. Penicuik were kicking off up the slope into the wind with
a strong sun troubling their defence throughout the half. From the kick off Moonie was allowed to run from inside his own
half right through the home defence but his parting shot was weak and went out harmlessly for a bye kick.
It was not long before Penicuik
were pinned back in their own half as Ballingry took every opportunity to launch the ball downfield. Their reward came in the eleventh minute when Penicuik gave the ball away in midfield allowing Dair to
send ADAMS through to put the home team ahead. Penicuik survived a spell of pressure
when dead ball expert Dair failed to make the most of two free kick opportunities on the edge of the penalty area. Gibb found
his way into referee Potter’s note book for protesting as he felt several refereeing decisions were going in the home
Penicuik hit back with an excellent
counter attack in the twenty eighth minute as Moonie broke through on the left. His cross was headed down by Cameron but Barr
skied his effort high over the cross bar. Four minutes later, Penicuik were level as again Moonie broke free on the left.
A neat interchange of passes with Milne saw Moonie pass inside to COLE whose left
foot shot was only half stopped by goalkeeper Smith’s despairing dive as the ball crossed the line.
Within two minutes the home team
were back in front. Dair released Halley down the left and when his cross came over, DUNCAN
was on hand at the back post to bundle the ball past Ramage. As Ballingry piled on the pressure Ramage had a point blank save
from Smart before Penicuik were awarded their first free kick in the thirty fifth minute when Ramage was impeded following
a corner kick. Despite incessant home pressure Penicuik’s defence held firm.
On the stroke of half time Penicuik
had the chance to equalise when Cameron was tripped on the edge of the penalty area but Milne’s free kick went over
the top of the cross bar.
Half Time: Ballingry
Rovers 2 v 1 Penicuik Athletic
Penicuik went straight onto the
attack in the second half and had two loud penalty claims turned down. Cameron headed a Gay cross over the bar and corner
kicks by Gay and Moonie were eventually cleared. Smith pulled off a good save from Cole after he was set up by Moonie but
the equaliser would not come.
Ballingry came close to extending
their lead in the sixty first minute. Barr gave away a free kick on the edge of the penalty area and Dair’s effort was
parried low down at his post by Ramage. The ball fell at Duncan’s feet but his shot hit Ramage and again rebounded to
Duncan’s feet. This time Ramage held on to Duncan’s effort and cleared the danger. Penicuik returned to the attack
and a Moonie corner was cleared before Milne shot past when well placed.
In the sixty eighth minute Ballingry
increased their lead. Top scorer SMART broke free up the left and stepped inside
to curl a right foot shot into the net off the inside of the back post. Ryrie and McDonald replaced Gibb and Cole and the
newcomers posed the home defence some problems with their quick passing down the left. Smith pulled off a terrific save from
a Moonie free kick after Cameron was fouled on the edge of the penalty area.
With ten minutes remaining, the
visitors pulled a goal back when a GAY corner kick beat everybody and ended up
in the back of the Ballingry net. As Penicuik hunted the equaliser, Smith tipped the ball off Cameron’s head from another
McDonald cross before another Gay corner created an almighty goalmouth scramble. A McDonald shot drifted past the post as
time ran out on Penicuik. Ballingry were able to play out the last few minutes of the game taking the ball into the corners.
Ramage was called on to make a smart save from Adam before referee Potter blew the final whistle after allowing an additional
three minutes for the long spells that the ball was out of the park.
Result: Ballingry Rovers 3 v
2 Penicuik Athletic.