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Bo’ness 5, Elgin 4: Match Report

BO’NESS UNITED pulled off one of their greatest achievements by reaching the fourth round of the William Hill Scottish Cup for the first time ever.

The Newtown Park men defeated League Two side Elgin City at the second time of asking after coming out on top in a nine-goal replay thriller.

The teams shared 17 goals over the course of their epic third round clash but its East Superleague champions Bo’ness who progress to the last 32 where they now host League Two leaders Arbroath.

Darren Gribben did most of the damage for the junior side by bagging a double with Will Snowdon, Ross Campbell and Nicky Walker also getting on the score sheet for the hosts.

Shane Sutherland hit a double for the visitors with skipper Mark Nicolson and veteran Marvin Andrews also finding the net but the Highlanders were always second best to a rampant Bo’ness side.

The East Region giants now join Linlithgow Rose, Auchinleck Talbot and Irvine Meadow as the only junior teams to reach the fourth round of the Scottish Cup.

Bo’ness started brighter and took the lead with only four minutes on the clock in front of a packed Newtown Park crowd.

Andy Scott got into a good position on the right and played a great low cross into the penalty area where Gribben evaded the attentions of his marker to flick the ball low past Michael Fraser.

But the League Two side drew level in 10 minutes when Sutherland burst into the box from the right-wing only to be tripped by Colin Leiper as the striker shaped to shoot.

Sutherland dusted himself down before taking the spot kick and he coolly placed the ball low into the right corner of Mark Peat’s goal.

Sutherland went close with a great effort in 14 minutes when Darryl McChardy found the big striker on the edge of the box with a well worked corner but Sutherland’s powerful drive was well blocked by Peat.

The game was swinging from end to end and in 18 minutes the junior side edged back in front after Anderson delivered an inch perfect free-kick into the penalty area and Snowdon rose unchallenged to thump a header low past Fraser.

Bo’ness had a great chance to extend their lead in 24 minutes when Gribben escaped the attentions of Gordon Finlayson on the left before sending a great cross into the box for Anderson but the young striker couldn’t flick his header towards goal.

The home side were now well on top and they put themselves in a great position in 32 minutes when danger man Gribben netted the Bo’ness third.

Gribben collected the ball wide on the left and linked with Scott Pittman before taking a reverse pass in his stride and then slid the ball low past the advancing Fraser to send the home fans wild.

Elgin had a great chance to get back into the game in 37 minutes when Campbell tripped Brian Cameron inside the box and referee Nick Walsh pointed to the spot for the second time.

But this time Peat got the better of Sutherland by saving the strikers spot kick, however the Elgin striker made amends just before the break when he pounced on the rebound from Nicolson’s powerful drive to haul his team back into the game.

Elgin started the second period brightly but didn’t force any real openings or cause any concern for the Bo’ness defence.

Bo’ness had the ball in the net again just before the hour mark when Gribben thought he had claimed a hat-trick after slamming Ross Philp’s cross high past Fraser but Gribben was judged to have been offside.

However it wasn’t long before the junior side extended their lead and put one foot in the fourth round.

Anderson swung a dangerous corner in from the left and Campbell bulleted a header into the back of the net leaving Fraser helpless in 66 minutes.

But the Borough Briggs men didn’t give in and pulled a goal back in 74 minutes when sub Daniel Moore’s cross was headed high into the net by skipper Nicolson to again reduce the arrears.

The game was now swinging from end to end as both teams committed everything and in 79 minutes Bo’ness all but secured their place in round four when Walker ran onto sub Chris Donnelly’s flick on and slid the ball low past Fraser from 10 yards.

The Highlanders still refused to lie down and in 88 minutes Marvin Andrews pulled a goal back when he volleyed past Peat from close range after good build up play down the right.

And Elgin threw everything at their hosts in the closing stages, which included 6 minutes of added time, but Bo’ness stood firm to secure the historical victory and Allan McGonigal’s men will now look forward to their clash with Arbroath.

Stuart Coleman

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