Up North and Out East
Let us start with the game of the round – Elgin City 5 Arbroath 7. It was two hat tricks for Arbroath’s Lee Sibanda and Darren Gribben whilst Steven Doris got the other to pull Paul Sheerin’s side through. Elgin’s strikes came from Craig Gunn, Dennis Wyness and Daniel Moore whilst Stuart Leslie got two. Whilst a loss this must be a great boost though for Elgin’s Division Three hopes. Arbroath’s reward is a home tie against Forfar Athletic.
Forfar managed to engineer a shock win against First Division opposition in Forfar Athletic 3 Dunfermline 2. At half time, the Pars were 2-1 up thanks to strikes from Ryan Wallace and Andrew Barrowman. Omar Kader had got the first goal for Forfar before, in the second half, Danny Denholm and then a man who knows the way to goal – Gavin Swankie – got the final goal that sent Forfar through to face Swankie’s former club.
There were two Highland League clubs involved in round one and the first to feature – Wick Academy were stopped at home in Wick Academy 2 Raith Rovers 4. Wick were twice level though Raith came away in the second half with the win thanks to 2 goals from Grant Anderson and Pat Clarke. Luckasz Geruzal and David Allen had managed to equalise strikes from Brian Graham and Douglas Hill. Raith’s reward is a home tie against Montrose.
Montrose faced the other Highland League team and conspired to produce the same scoreline. It was Montrose 4 Inverurie Loco Works 2. Stuart MacKay put the Highlanders ahead before the flood gates opened and Paul Watson, Martin Boyle, Gary Wood and Terry Masson threw 4 past the Inverurie with Mark Souter getting a late consolation for the visitors.
From games full of goals we turn to one full of tension. In Cowdenbeath 1 Alloa Athletic 1 (Cowdenbeath win 3-1 on penalties) we knew it would be a fascinating affair due to the season just past. The management teams of Colin Cameron and Paul Hartley had been the talking point of their divisions as they had won their Championships with some style. In this contest it was two goals in 20 minutes that sealed extra time and penalties. Lewis Coult had put the Blue Brazil ahead before Ben Gordon had pegged them back. The 2 goalkeepers were in fine form before it was left to the penalty decider to settle the tie. Ultimately Cowdenbeath triumphed and they now meat East Fife in the next round.
East Fife’s passage came courtesy of an away win as they made it Peterhead 1 East Fife 2. The Fifers went in front through a Scott McBride penalty and a Collin Samuel header before Rory McAllister opened his account this season for the Blue Toon in the second half. It was too little too late as the Fifers progressed leaving Peterhead in their wake.
In the game of the day for the TV a nervous Rangers made their debut and took extra time to progress past Brechin City in Brechin City 1 Rangers 2 (After ET). Lee McCulloch got the decisive goal in extra time after Andy Little had put them ahead early on but Andy Jackson had pegged the new boys back in the first half. The reward for Rangers is a mouth watering tie in the next round as they head to Falkirk.
Falkirk’s progression came after beating fellow neighbours Stirling Albion in Falkirk 3 Stirling Albion 0. 1 up at half time through Kieran Duffie it was a Lyle Taylor double in the second half that sealed the result for the Bairns. The next round will be an evening kick off and for Falkirk and Rangers it will be in front of the TV cameras.
Out West and Down South
Whilst they were banging the goals in, in the other geographical section, the South West contingent were a little shyer. Queens Park 2 Berwick Rangers 2 (Queen’s Park win 3-2 on penalties) saw the largest number of goals and as it was two Third Division teams certainly was seen as some form of indicator for the season. Neil Janczyk and Tony Quinn had made it 1-1 after 90 minutes and then in extra time Tony Quinn and Kevin MacDonald made it 2 all. Penalties followed and the Spiders have gone through to set up one of those new style Glasgow derbies – against Partick Thistle.
Thistle’s progression swept away that team that used to be in Glasgow – Clyde – in Clyde 0 Partick Thistle 1 as Kris Doolan got the only goal of the game. Played at Recreation Park, Alloa because Broadwood’s artificial surface is not ready, it was hardly a fire cracker but Jackie McNamara will not worry a jot as he prepares to take the Jags to the National Stadium in the next round.
The next tie that had plenty of goals (at least in terms of the South West ) was East Stirling 3 Ayr United 1 as new manager Mark Roberts saw his Honest men swept aside by the team that once again finished bottom of the pile last season. A Michael Herd double, ably accompanied by Nathan Shepherd on fire had Ayr’s youngest ever goal scorer, Mark Shankland respond early in the second half before Scott Maxwell put the tie beyond doubt. East Stirling now prepare to meet Airdrie United at home in the second round.
Airdrie United got there thanks to Willie McLaren in Hamilton Academical 0 Airdrie United 1. The result – another shock in the competition – came after the Accies Chairman pointed out to supporters that this new team at New Douglas Park was built on youth and needed time. If anyone has a track record of building with youth it is Billy Reid and this looks like it will be a long season for the Accies fans – let’s hope they keep the faith.
There was yet another First Division scalp in Annan Athletic 1 Livingston 0 as Graeme Bell got the first game in the Galabank’s history on a synthetic surface bagged through a 74th minute strike after coming off the sub’s bench. Annan will be hoping that this result means good omens in the Ramsden’s as they are at home again in the second round against Stenhousemuir.
Stenny got there thanks to Stranraer 1 Stenhousemuir 2. John Gemmell had put the visitors ahead in the first half before Sean Winter had got one back for the home side. With 4 minutes remaining Brown Ferguson got the decisive strike making it 2-1. Of course playing on an artificial surface holds no fears for Stenhousemuir.
Morton managed to progress thanks to Greenock Morton 2 Albion Rovers 0. Allan Moore’s side last year hit the headlines with a 9-0 demolition at Stranraer; this year Allan Moore will be happy to just win and move on. Tony Wallace and David O’Brien got the goals early in the second half to set up the second round south west tie of the next round against Queen of the South.
The Doonhamers navigated past a First Division side in Dumbarton 0 Queen of the South 1. It was Nicky Clark in the second half who got them through as the team who went up lost to the team who dropped down. Although now in the Second Division Queens have retained a full time set up and against a part time First Division team it appears to have been decisive. This may not spell good times ahead for the Sons of the Rock.