Arniston Rangers v. Berwick Rangers XI ( Photo courtesy of Irene Hogarth )
ARNISTON RANGERS 3 BERWICK RANGERS XI 0 (Tuesday, Aug 4th, 2015 )
Berwick had plenty of players to choose from for this friendly against East Junior Premier League hosts at Gorebridge in Midlothian as the first team squad trained on the Newbyres pitch before the game. However, the focus was on the under 20 squad but with four of the substitutes from last Saturday’s League Cup win over Alloa included; Andy Russell and Ross Drummond, who came on against the Wasps, plus the former Coldstream duo Mark Walters and Kieran Ainslie.
Berwick hardly had time to draw breath before keeper Walters was forced to leap to push away Guy Kerr’s header and seconds later, Danny McFadden gave the hosts a 90 seconds lead.
As Berwick began to gain some momentum, a series of ‘What ifs?’ followed. After 8 minutes, Andy Russell squared the ball to Daniel Pattenden but despite being directly in front of goal, the Chirnside youngster fired over the bar. From a similar spot to the left of goal, ‘Rusty’ played the ball across to namesake Scott, a yard from the line. His initial strike hit the post and though it looked an easy task, he couldn’t get a stab at the rebound. Andy was involved again after collecting a long punt from Walters. He tried to chip Dale Cornet who rushed to the edge of his box and whose judgement proved correct when he made a good save.
Arniston went on to increase their lead in the 22nd minute. With the ball bobbing about inside Berwick’s penalty area, each side tried to do the appropriate thing, Berwick to clear, Arniston to shoot. A handful of players got a touch of the ball before it broke for Lumbert Katelaze to make it 2-0. The same player fired a foot over the bar after cutting inside to set up his shot before the half ended with Berwick’s Ross Graham heading Ross Drummond’s long, crossfield free kick over the opposite bar.
During the second half, Cornet got it right again, going down to snatch the ball from Andy Russell after his teammates gave it away. Drummond, operating in midfield, weaved his way past several home players in an elaborate build up which culminated in Andy Russell’s fierce, low drive finishing just wide. In similar fashion, Drummond provided an opportunity for overlapping full back Ally McDonald to have a crack but Cornet dived to save the angled shot.
Berwick Rangers first teamers and coaches watch the game at Gorebridge ( Photo courtesy of Irene Hogarth )
The visitors enjoyed the greater share of second period possession but too often, crucial passes did not find the man. Walters was having a relatively quiet time but was beaten again on 77 minutes. Lewis McKay, facing his own goal, was hustled off the ball and Katelaze passed to McFadden for his second score of the night.
Walters had to look sharp to tip over the bar a blistering 25 yarder from a trialist sub as the Juniors sought to finish with a fourth goal ahead of referee Alan Hogg blowing for full time in the fading light at a ground without floodlights.
Berwick Rangers XI: Walters, McDonald, Ross Graham, Herriot ( McConnell 46 ), Ainslie, McKay ( Hastie 81 ), Pattenden ( Regan Graham 46 ), Denton, A.Russell ( Swaney 87 ), S.Russell ( Watt 68 ), Drummond