In a match that saw a relatively uneventful first half, the Second Round of the Alex Jack Cup came alive with four second-half goals, propelling Bo’ness into the Third Round of the cup.
The initial 45 minutes were marked by Bo’ness’s frustration in front of the net, despite several attempts; however, goalkeeper Currid had a quiet half, making no saves. The game welcomed back Ogilvie, returning from an injury that had sidelined him for a few weeks, and Snedden, who started the match from the bench.
Crossgates was the first of the two teams to create a noteworthy chance when their number 14 sent the ball over the bar after a well-executed lay-off in the box. Shortly thereafter, Robertson had a free-kick opportunity from 22 yards on the right-hand side of the D, but the keeper made an easy save at his near post.
Mackay, combining with Robertson just outside the 18-yard box, found space but couldn’t bend his shot into the far post, as it remained low, and the keeper collected comfortably at his feet. Robertson later found space down the left corner of the 18-yard box, outwitted the defender, and fired a powerful shot on goal. The keeper made an impressive diving save, pushing the ball behind for a corner.
On the 29th minute, Crossgates had another chance when a cross into the box found their number 7, who rose well but headed just wide of the goal. Robertson continued to make his presence felt, storming down the right, playing a one-two with R. Weir, and sending his shot past the keeper’s far post. A touch of bend on the ball might have resulted in a stunning finish for Bo’ness’s top scorer this season.
Crossgates had their number 14 attempt a side-footed shot from just outside the D, but it sailed over the bar following some well-orchestrated play. Mitchell, positioned high up the pitch, struck a shot from the right corner of the 18-yard box, sending it across the goal. MacDonald slid in but couldn’t connect, as the ball narrowly missed the outside of the post. A promising run into the box, initiated by a lay-off from Ogilvie, saw Captain MacKay opt for a touch rather than a first-time shot. His placed shot rolled wide of the post.
The first half concluded without any goals, but the signs were encouraging for Bo’ness.
At halftime, Bo’ness made two substitutions, replacing MacDonald and R. Weir with Main and Snedden, and these changes had an immediate impact.
In the second half, Bo’ness had the first opportunity as Main made a run into the box right from kickoff but rolled his shot just wide of the keeper’s far post. From a corner, Sharples rose well to head the ball out to Paterson, who was unmarked, but he couldn’t direct his header on target, and it sailed over the bar.
Finally, in the 53rd minute, the first goal of the match arrived, courtesy of new arrival Simpson, scoring his second goal in his second game for the club. Ogilvie delivered a cross across the goal, and Simpson rose at the back post, heading the ball downwards to beat the keeper.
Shortly after, Mackay saw his second effort of the game sail over the bar from an 18-yard shot. In the 47th minute, M. Weir was fouled on the edge of the box, resulting in an injury to the challenging Crossgates player and a three-minute stoppage.
From the ensuing free-kick, Ogilvie beautifully struck a low shot across goal, eluding everyone and nestling into the corner of the net at the keeper’s far post. M. Weir made way for McInnes right after the goal, and two minutes later, the in-form striker scored his third goal in three games with a low shot inside the box that beat the keeper.
A stellar performance from Ogilvie led to his substitution for Turnbull. Five minutes later, Robertson forced an outstanding save from the Crossgates keeper with a drilled shot, but a strong wrist sent the ball wide of the goal. From the resulting corner, Paterson attempted an acrobatic header, which missed the target.
The goal of the game showcased why Robertson was the top scorer of the season. He unleashed a beautifully left-footed volleyed effort from a ball played over the top, after which he was subbed to make way for McAteer.
Currid, who had a relatively quiet game, had to be alert in the 89th minute with a brilliant save to palm a certain goal wide. From the ensuing corner, Crossgates had a volleyed effort from 22 yards that travelled straight to Currid, who held it firmly.
The final opportunity of the match fell to McAteer in injury time. He rolled a pass from Snedden into the goal past the diving keeper; however, the referee incorrectly judged McAteer to be offside, despite being clearly played onside by the Crossgates number 5.
In the end, the disallowed goal did not impact the outcome, as Bo’ness comfortably secured their place in the draw for the Third Round.
Final Score: Bo’ness Athletic 4 – 0 Crossgates Primrose
The Alex Jack Cup, Second Round