Wigtown remain unbeaten at the top

Fleet Star against Newton Stewart
Fleet Star against Newton Stewart

With the race for this season’s South of Scotland League title well under way there was a full programme of matches on Saturday.

Wigtown and Bladnoch kept up their 100 per cent record with a narrow single-goal victory over Lochar Thistle.

The Dumfries side were expected to push the Trammondford Park side all the way and that is exactly how this contest turned out, with both sides creating chances but only Wigtown taking the advantage of scoring. The goal that won the match and the three points came after 20 minutes when striker Robert Jamieson found the net.

St Cuthbert Wanderers continued in their winning ways following a poor start to the season when they won their fourth match in succession. In a five-goal thriller at Hospital Park against Crichton, a single from Grant Middlemass and a double from Ross Hunter were enough to take the points, with Jak Dingwall and Mark Leighfield finding the net for the home side.

Abbey Vale won their first point of the season against Mid-Annandale in a 2-2 draw at New Abbey.

A Chris Mellon penalty was countered by a Chris Norvel header to send the teams in at the break all square with a goal each. The visitors’ Adam Smith put the Lockerbie side ahead with 15 minutes left to play but a minute later John Grierson scored an equaliser to give his side a share of the points.

Fleet Star have started the season on a high note and in their home match against Newton Stewart at Garries Park they took the lead in the 13th minute through Corey Thomson.

However, the visitors struck back in the 25th minute when Dean Thomson scored from the penalty spot and three minutes later Liam Muir put the Creesiders in front with a headed goal to give them a lead that they held into the break.

In the second half Newton Stewart impressed when they went nap and scored five goals through Johnny Fisher, Graeme Blain and Lewis Dunn and Ryan McKie with a double to give the visitors a 7-1 victory.

Heston Rovers also had an impressive victory at Palmerston Park against Creetown in a 6-0 win although it took the home side until the 34th minute to open the scoring. A Gary Tweedie cross picked out Jonathan Boyd at the back post and his header found the top corner of the net. Two minutes from the break Heston went further ahead when Boyd provided the pass to allow Sean Kevan to slip the ball past keeper Martin Roddie.

A minute later Heston went further ahead when defender Fraser Magee played some good outfield football which resulted in him chipping the ball over the keeper from 18 yards out for the goal of the match. Darren Brown continued the rout eight minutes after the break with an effort from 20 yards and in the 55th minute Gary Tweedie won the ball from a Creetown defender and placed a fierce low shot past the keeper for goal number five. Russell Jardine completed the scoring four minutes from time from eight yards out when he netted from a Darren Brown cutback.

Heston Rovers manager Raymond Boyd said after the match: “Today we were patient for 30-odd minutes attempting to break down a resilient Creetown defence. When Jonathan Boyd scored it appeared to relax the players and for 10 minutes before the break we knocked the ball around positively, creating opportunities time after time.

“The two goals before the half-time whistle basically killed the game. After the break we lost a man to a red card but we still controlled the play and continued to press. The effort and commitment of our players was great today and they worked very hard.”

Results from Saturday, August 17

South of Scotland League

Abbey Vale 2 Mid-Annandale 2

Crichton 2 St Cuthbert Wanderers 3

Fleet Star 1 Newton Stewart 7

Heston Rovers 6 Creetown 0

Lochar Thistle 0 Wigtown and Bladnoch 1