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Saturday 28 December

Lochore Welfare 4-4(2-2) Whitburn Juniors

Whitburn: Horne, Griffin, Wilson, Forrest(Mochan 40), Hamilton, Boyle, Nicol, Cooper, Taylor, Thomson, Tomaszewski, Subs: Graham, Taylor
Lochore: Inglis, Christie, Anderson(Renton 87), Thomson(McNeish 69), Arthur, Small, Donaldson, Renton, Wood(Harley 75), Dawson, Rolland Subs: Doig, Gillespie

The Lochore pitch today must have been on the barely playable category as it seemed really soft in many areas yet the game went ahead and both teams served up an entertaining match though not for the defensive purists. Whitburn started the game really well and were in front within four minutes as Matthew cooper netted after receiving a pass from Dewi Taylor. In the 12th minute Lochore showed they weren't there to make up the numbers as Joe Dawson has a header from a corner cleared off the line. With 18 minutes gone Taylor had a shot go just wide after good build up play on the left. midway through the half the home side were level when Ben Rolland scored from close in after a free kick from the right that had been needlessly conceded. They almost took the lead a minute later when a long clearance from keeper Gary Inglis fell to Logan Donaldson but his shot was saved at the expense of a corner. With 26 minutes played Darren Tomaszewski intercepted the ball in midfield and passed to Iain Griffin who laid the ball off to Greg Nicol and then got to the ball first as the latter's long range shot was parried out by the keeper and neatly lifted it over him and into the net. Just 10 minutes later, though, hesitation in the Whitburn defence allowed Rolland to advance and he scored with a powerful shot. Not long after, attempting to chase a long ball, Greg Forrest seemed to have got his foot stick in the soft ground and he went down clutching his ankle, The referee played on which allowed a 3 on 1 situation and luckily Greig Renton shot wide. Forrest meanwhile limped off after a long period of treatment to be replaced by Andy Mochan. Fortunately we learned that the young defender's injury was not as bad as first appeared but he will likely need a few games to recover. After this Logan Donaldson had a wide shot well saved and the same fate befell a free kick from Dawson as Lochore ended the half on top.

The half had barely started when Mochan rose well at the back post to head in a deep Nicol cross from the left. Taking control at this point Taylor went on a mazy run but shot just over - many felt that a 2 goal lead would be unassailable for the home side but it was they who scored next. It was Renton who would score it as he drove in on the right though he initially appeared to be a couple of yards offside. The lead was restored in the 66th minute when a pinpoint through ball by Andy Thomson was converted by Mochan who beat the keeper to the ball. In only four minutes, however, the home side levelled for the final time when Rolland, free at the back post, completed his hattrick when a Dawson cross found him. Whitburn then took control of the game and in the 78th minute Tomaszewski might have sealed the win when a great Mochan cross picked him out but he took one touch too many which allowed the defender to readjust and his shot squirmed narrowly wide. Both Nicol and Mochan then had a chance each to seal it but the former fired over and the latter just wide. near the end Grant Hamilton seemed to accidentally collide with a Lochore forward and was yellow carded and then shown red as he had been booked at the end of the first half. It seemed like a harsh award but the free kick was blocked by the wall to deny the home side a a winner.

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