Hawick Royal Albert United 6, Dalkeith Thistle 2
Yes, home wins have certainly been scarce down Albert Park way for some considerable time, reports John Slorance.
But one arrived last Saturday and, what’s more, it came in swashbuckling style.
The recently-restyled Hawick Royal Albert United put smiles on the faces of a long-suffering support with a top show.
Following their 3-1 win at Arniston Rangers in midweek, they produced some good football and loads of all-round endeavour and commitment, plus six goals.
There was little hint of the glory that was to come Hawick’s way during the early part of the game.
Thistle had the early sting in peppering the home defence with some promising raids which, however, brought about few scoring chances. HRAU, on the other hand, twice came near to scoring in less frequent attacks.
Liam Lavery blasted a shot over the bar and Scott Craig then broke through, only to be foiled by a save from ‘keeper Jamie Newman.
The hosts broke the deadlock after 29 minutes.
Chasing a long Raymond Fleming clearance, which he appeared to have no chance of getting, Kevin Strathdee cashed in on some stationary defending to nip in to score after 29 minutes.
Boosted by this, the home side began to raise their game and, six minutes later, Lavery got his name on the score sheet by weaving his way out of two tackles to shoot home.
HRAU kept their foot on the gas and Craig had a net bound shot cleared off the line by Ronan Clelland.
With a minute of the second half gone, Thistle fell into further arrears.
Fed by an Aaron Swailes pass, Lewis Swaney, a new signing from Gala Hotspur, sprayed the ball to the feet of free-scoring striker Kevin Strathdee, who produced a spot-on finish.
This was followed by a deluge of goals.
Dalkeith got the first as Cammy Leslie floated over a corner kick, which Andrew Wilson headed against the bar. Clelland nodded in the rebound.
Hawick immediately restored their three-goal lead through Craig who beat Newman with a powerful header on meeting a Fleming cross.
Thistle, in turn, reduced the leeway as Fleming brought down Jack Burrows in the box and Guy Kerr stuck away the resultant spot kick.
The action continued to flow and Swailes got a fifth strike for HRAU with a perfectly-struck drive.
Another Hawick goal was to follow and a top-notch one it was to be.
On breaking through from a Swailes pass, Swaney coolly waltzed round Newman to stick the ball into the net.
In a late rally, Thistle’s Clelland, Michael Bennet and Liam Currie all had efforts kept out by Hawick ‘keeper Dean Fry.