Hawick Royal Albert 0
EoS FIRST DIVISION
JOHN SLORANCE reports from Albert Park
ROYAL ALBERT discovered to their dismay on Saturday that lightning can strike twice.
For a week after being denied a win over Gala Fairydean by a last-gasp goal, Hawick were hit by another late bolt from the blue in this encounter.
With a minute of the match remaining it appeared as though the Albert Park outfit were going to continue their recent unbeaten run, but it wasn’t to be.
Disappointed Hawick captain Craig Beattie told TheSouthern: “It’s a bit deflating and also unbelievable that we lost a late goal again.
“There was nothing between the two sides and I felt we might sneak a goal, but it turned out to be the other way round.
“We certainly didn’t deserve to lose and the players are really gutted, not just for themselves, but for the young fans who had been cheering them on, as their support is greatly appreciated.”
Craigroyston were first to threaten when Martin Laidlaw tested Hawick keeper Andy Jack with a low shot. Albert then showed what they had to offer through a mazy Kris O’Neil run – his shot held by Craigie number one Stuart Addison.
The sun was out, but the remainder of the first half was a dull affair. Both sides huffed and puffed, but failed to create scoring chances and apart from Craigroyston’s Andy Milligan and Laidlaw coming close there were no hints of a goal.
Following the break, from an O’Neil corner kick, Beattie had an effort kept out by Addison.
Craigroyston defender Martyn Wallace then came to his side’s aid when heading out a rasping O’Neil drive that appeared bound for the net. At the other end, Jamie Stewart had a great chance to put the Edinburgh men ahead, only to blaze over the bar after Jack had let a Milligan cross sail through his hands.
With time running out, a no-scoring draw appeared to be on the cards.
But Jamie Stewart swung a free kick high into the goalmouth which Royalists failed to clear. Paul Russell laid the ball off to Greg Irvine, who slotted his shot into the net.
Hawick Royal Albert: A. Jack, G. Burnett (P. McCallion), J. Wood, L. Dunn, G. Clee, P. Power, J. McGhie, C. Beattie, K. O’Neil (J. Patereck), A. Noble, D. Laing (M. Patton).