United keep improving despite narrow loss

Kelso United manager Tommy (Prof) Blaikie.
Kelso United manager Tommy (Prof) Blaikie.

Kelso United 0

Heriot-Watt Univ1

United only just lost out to the students in a close encounter at Woodside Park, the only goal of the game coming after 10 minutes from University striker Andy Forbes, writes George Riley.

Having had convincing victories over Eyemouth and Hawick in the past seven days, Heriot-Watt must have thought they could do the same to the Tweedsiders, however, they were lucky to take the points.

“Although we lost the game that was the best team performance since I returned as manager,” said Kelso boss Prof Blaikie.

He added: “We had the students on the rack for most of the second half, but couldn’t convert the chances into goals.”

It was the visitors who had the first sight on goal as striker Chris Donnelly ‘s shot was held by Elliott Turnbull.

It was only 10 minutes into the game when the University side took the lead.

A corner on the left by Michael Connor was swung into the box, the United defence cleared back to the same player, who then directed a cross onto the head of Donnelly, who knocked the ball down for Andy Forbes to strike home.

United, although enjoying plenty of possession, took until the half-hour mark before having a direct attempt on goal – a quickly-taken free kick by Jordan Hopkinson shaving the outside of the post.

A break from the back from Ben Herdman resulted in the youngster’s 20 yard shot just going wide.

A throw in from the right by Herdman found its way through to midfielder Dean Boyne who fired wide of the post and this was followed by a Damien McNulty header going wide from a Ryan Beveridge corner. The second period saw the home team taking the game to the students with a wave of continuous pressure.

A good break from Liam Hill found Hopkinson on the left edge of the box, but the strikers shot sailed wide.

Defender Jack Logan then broke from the back and unleashed a 30 yard shot which keeper Craig Saunders did well to tip over the bar.

United kept knocking at the door and Hill had a snap shot which had to be turned round the post.

A good run down the right by Herdman the defender finding Hopkinson, who in turn passed to Hill, whose shot was saved by the legs of Saunders.

In a game that was fairly fought, both teams found themselves down to 10 men in the last five minutes of the match.

University were first to lose a player as substitute Cameron Stevenson was shown red for preventing Elliott Turnbull from clearing a ball, which seemed harsh, and then United defender Darren Bowie was shown a second yellow for tripping Donnelly as he was breaking through on goal.

Turnbull almost got the equaliser with the last kick of the game as he launched a free kick from inside his own half which his opposite number Saunders had to scramble to palm over the bar.