Waverley stung by cruellest of exits

Hawick Waverley 5

Loganlea United 5 
(after extra time – Loganlea won 5-4 on penalties)


JOHN SLORANCE reports from Wilton Lodge Park

ON ONE touchline there was a huge Hawick support. On the other, an equally-large following from Livingston – and in the middle of it all there was action galore.

The respective groups of spectators certainly had plenty to roar about and the normal peace and tranquillity of Wilton Lodge Park was certainly broken on Saturday afternoon.

Loganlea were first to make a noise by breaking the deadlock in the fifth minute. Waverley were caught cold by a long ball down the middle and Jamie Robertson raced in unchallenged to fire home.

Within three minutes, the visitors went further ahead. Robertson again emerged the marksman by intercepting a poorly-hit pass from Waverley keeper Euan Reilly that had been intended for Jamie Richardson, to score easily.

The Teries began to find their feet after this, though, and with 31 minutes gone, reduced the leeway. Andrew Maltman polished off a slick passing move between Ross Wallace and Dean McColm by drilling the ball into the net.

The action continued to flow and after Robertson and Lee McLeod both hit the bar, Waverley equalised on the hour mark. United keeper Ian Fennel fumbled a cross and Neal McConnell drove in a shot that was blocked by Tony Grieve. Wallace was on hand to stick away the rebound.

The Teries edged in front four minutes later when McColm touched in a rolling ball from close range after a Taylor Hope shot had come off Fennel. But Waverley did not have their lead for long, for in the 70th minute Lee Adam put Loganlea level after the home defence failed to clear a Derek Newall free kick.

The remainder of normal time saw United come nearest to scoring with a Robertson shot that rebounded off the bar.

The tie drifted into extra time and six minutes into the first period Scott Mackie put Loganlea ahead with a speculative lobbed shot that sailed over the head of Reilly.

After Robertson had made it a nap hand for United, as well as completing his hat-trick, by putting away an Adams cross at the start of the second period, it looked all over for Waverley.

Hawick had other ideas, however, and substitute Mark Deans pulled a goal back, and in a dramatic finish McConnell equalised a minute from time.

It was now left to penalties to decide the outcome.

McConnell, McColm, Ian Turnbull and Liam Lavery all netted for Waverley, but Hope and Richardson were foiled by saves from Fennel.

Reilly pulled off a stop from Callum Kerr, but was beaten by Alan Fleming, Newall, Adams, Robertson and Grieve.