Fresh faces in squad but Albert still haunted by the drop

Hawick Royal Albert 0, Spartans 4

Monday, 13th March 2017, 2:45 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 9:50 am
Hawick RA, in red, try to prevent Spartans midfielder David Greenhill having a crack at goal (picture by Bill McBurnie)

There were four new Hawick signings on parade and new blood had been injected – however, it was the same old story of a losing tale.

For, despite the introduction of Andy Jack from Penicuik Athletic, Easthouses Lily’s Steven Campbell, Yusif Bernawi of Haddington Athletic and David McKenzie on a loan capture from Musselburgh Athletic, Hawick Royal Albert once again fell by the wayside.

Another defeat, another game without any league points. Points that are desperately needed to help evade Royalists’ deepening relegation concerns.

With only two players on the bench, one of them being a substitute goalkeeper, the Albert came near to falling behind during the opening exchanges.

Paul Thomson met a Michael Herd corner kick with his head and a goal looked certain until Sean Conaghan changed things with a goal line clearance.

Ross Allum then fired wide, while at the other end, Josh Morris squandered a chance to open the scoring by hitting a shot into the hands of Spartans keeper Blair Carswell, following good play by Yusif Bernawi.

In the 31st minute, Spartans sailed ahead when the unmarked Allan Brown fastened on to a Scott Maxwell pass to fire home.

The visitors increased their lead five minutes later when Beesley sliced his way through the Albert rearguard with a thrusting run and cut the ball into the path of Maxwell, who produced a spot-on finish.

Royalists were looking completely bemused at this stage and fell further behind in the 42 nd minute. Beesley skipped his way out of three challenges with remarkable ease before hitting a shot past Albert keeper Andy Jack.

After Morris and Daryl Johnson had given the home men a glimmer of hope by coming near to scoring in the early part of the second period, Spartans went four up in the 62nd minute.

Running on to a loose ball, Allum drove in a shot which Jack got down to block. The Spartans striker darted in to meet the rebound, only to have his feet whipped from underneath by the grounded Jack.

A penalty was rightly awarded, which Beesley stuck away with great precision.

Apart from Carswell thwarting David McKenzie with a splendid save, the Albert rarely looked like scoring and Spartans eased on to victory.

Albert manager Kevin Milne said: “We knew it would be a hard game for us as Spartans are in the top three in the league, so if we were to get anything out of the match, it would have been a bonus.

“This didn’t happen but I think we can take something out of the game, though, as the boys worked hard and certainly didn’t let themselves down.”

Hawick Royal Albert: A. Jack, R. Stevenson, S. Spence, D. Jacobs, S. Campbell, D. Johnson, Y. Bernawi, S. Conaghan, J. Morris, H. Hunter, D. McKenzie. Subs: J. McPartlin, K. Rankin.