Whitehill Welfare 2, Hawick Royal Albert 3
Hawick Royal Albert booked a place in the semi-final of the Football Nation East of Scotland Qualifying Cup with a creditable win in Midlothian.
Royalists got off to a flying start by opening the scoring in the fifth minute when Josh Morris beat Welfare keeper Bryan Young with a chipped shot from a Ryan Stevenson cross.
Twelve minutes later, the Albert went further ahead following another Stevenson cross. Kris Mitchell this time found the net with a looping header.
No further goals arrived during the first half.
With five minutes of the second period gone, Whitehill reduced the leeway -
Michael Osbourne emerged as the Ferguson Park side’s marksman in heading home a Connor McGregor corner kick.
In the 70th minute, Mitchell restored Royalists’ two-goal lead, tucking away a loose ball after shots by Morris and Jon McInally had been blocked.
Welfare notched a second with 11 minutes remaining through John Williams, who beat Hawick keeper Kyle Rankin with a header on meeting a well-flighted Charlie Denton corner kick.
Albert manager Dean Shanks said of his side’s triumph: “Following a promising start, we switched off for a while but we got back on course again. It was a great result for us but we could well have won by more.”
Royalists meet Lothian Thistle/HV in the semi-final at Albert Park at a date yet to be arranged.
A victory would earn the Albert their first cup final outing for some considerable time.