Hawick royal albert1
Stirling Uni EOS1
HAWICK ROYAL ALBERT were battered and bruised at the end of this East of Scotland League Cup encounter, writes John Slorance.
Despite being at the receiving end of a barrage of non-stop attacks for the last 15 minutes, after having been reduced to ten men due to the sending off of Michael Smith, Hawick soaked up everything that came their way, to gain a very charitable draw.
Stirling set the early pace and Albert keeper Dean Fry, who was in top form throughout, twice pulled out the stops with two splendid saves from Kahn Williams.
Although Hawick were battling hard, Stirling had the edge and with 39 minutes gone, took the lead through Ben Cuff.
Early in the second period, Greig Johnston came near to getting his name on the Hawick score sheet following a corner from Nicky Cairns.
Kevin Strathdee was then unfortunate not to put the home side on a level pegging in hitting the post with a shot on the turn from a Michael McFerrin pass.
In the 67th minute however, Hawick did equalise. A long kick out from Fry caught the University out at the back and Strathdee took full advantage by rattling a shot into the net.
With 15 minutes remaining, the Albert were reduced to ten men due to dismissal of Smith for a second bookable offence and from here on Hawick had their backs to the wall.
Stirling launched attack after attack, but, aided by a magnificent save by Fry as well as a stroke of good fortune when a Ryan McCue shot cannoned off the post, Hawick held out to gain a share of the spoils.