Hawick Royal Albert 1-4 Vale of Leithen

By Callum Hodgson

at Albert Park

VALE’S bid to move away from the bottom two places of the Lowland League table was given a massive boost on Wednesday night.

The Innerleithen side saw off bottom club Hawick in the Borders derby at Albert Park.

And gaffer Chris Anderson was delighted with his side’s display. He told us: “I think the performances have been good over the last few weeks, we just didn’t have that luck in front of goal and we haven’t been clinical enough.

"But tonight I thought we were excellent. We scored in the first minute and from then on we were really good.

"We created enough opportunities in the game and it turned out to be quite comfortable in the end.”

It took the Vale just two minutes to open the scoring. Jordan Finnie played a perfect ball through to Liall Smith, who slotted past Craig Saunders.

But Hawick responded just four minutes later. After a fantastic cross from the left, Jon Tully’s header ricocheted off the post, but striker Danny McFadden was on hand to turn in the rebound.

Both sides created good chances, with David McCaughie coming close for the Albert and Thomas Patterson forcing a fingertip save on 42 minutes for the visitors.

The Vale did retake the lead two minutes later. A Finnie pass deflected off the legs of Shaun Spence before finding its way to Sean Stewart.

The keeper got a glove on his first effort, but he made no mistake the second time.

Anderson’s side continued to create good chances in the second half, with Stewart again wreaking havoc.

And they did get their third when another superb delivery from Patterson found the head of Steven Lynch running in at the back post on 65 minutes.

The Vale’s fourth came 11 minutes later from the spot, after Stewart was tripped. Patterson stepped up and drilled the ball home.

Hawick did keep battling, but found it difficult to create clear-cut chances. 

McFadden came closest, but his shot went over the bar.

Vale had to play the final 10 minutes with 10 men, when substitute Jonny Scott-Mercer was forced off after twisting his knee. But the visitors held on to claim a deserved three points.

Vale of Leithen: R Gilpin, A Lewis, T Patterson, A Smith, S Lynch, C McBride, L Smith (C Anderson 78), A Hunter, C Dawson (J Scott-Mercer 69), J Finnie, S Stewart.