Date : 17th September 2022
Opposition : Lochore Welfare
Venue : Away
Scorers : Drew Cummings, Regan Graham
Booked : Rhys Dixon, Craig Bell, Michael Robinson, Adam Deans
Sent Off : None
TRFC Man of the Match : TBC
Attendance : 79
Team Lineup :
Jay Atkinson on for Craig Bell 54 mins
Kieran Cromarty on for Michael Robinson 77 mins
Joao Vieira on for Rhys Dixon 77 mins
Adam Deans on for Kyle Wood 54 mins
Programme Cover :
None, away game
Match Report :
Tweedmouth’s three match unbeaten run came to an end as they lost to higher division opposition in the quarter final of the Alex Jack Cup. Rangers were without the suspended Melvin Sebastian and the injured Craig Colquhoun. Craig Bell and Rhys Bloomfield came into the starting eleven on the Fife club’s tight Central Park pitch in Crosshill.
Key men for the hosts were midfielder Joe Dawson and right wing man Robbie Crawford. Tweedmouth made a bright start with home keeper Dale Wotherspoon forced into a save from Regan Graham to end a bout of passing which opened up the home rearguard.
With quarter of an hour played, Lochore’s first attack of note brought about the opening goal. Dawson sprayed the ball out wide to Crawford who sent it back infield. Whether or not it was meant as a hopeful cross proved academic as it ended up shaking the netting inside the far corner of Stephen Mason’s goal.
Rangers fought back with Bloomfield winning a corner which Wotherspoon rose to punch clear before Bell was booked for simulation; the visiting camp of the opinion that, instead, his fall merited a penalty.
Lochore skipper Scott Small advanced from full back intent on causing damage from the left side but was prevented from doing so as Kyle Wood blocked both his shots.
The Welfare did look certain to score again through Ewan Sutherland, the ball heading for just inside the far post. Rhys Dixon popped up on the line to steer it away. Sutherland then tried from further out but the ball arced away from goal.
Lochore had better luck three minutes before half time. Crawford collected another crossfield pass to skip his way inside and make it 2-0. Rangers hit back immediately. Drew Cummings made it five goals in as many matches as sheer persistence took him through the defence to slip the ball past Wotherspoon.
Theoretically, that goal should have brought Tweedmouth back into the game but the new half was barely a minute old when Lochore stretched the margin back to two. This time, Joseph Kirby, who was to take on the mantle of playmaker for the soon to depart Dawson, sent a flat pass across goal. Sean Cusick needed only to give it a simple touch to make it 3-1.
Wotherspoon showed good positional sense off the ground and on it with two saves from Bell. On 62 minutes, in similar fashion to Cummings earlier, Kirby’s perseverance saw him break tackles to give Crawford the chance of his third goal of the day with an easy tap in.
With just under 20 minutes remaining, the visitors reduced the arrears for a second time. At first, Wotherspoon once more stopped Graham but when the ball came back to him, Rangers’ captain made sure. The final part of the game was probably the away team’s best. With Wotherspoon off his line, Cummings wasn’t far off from 40 yards.
The home defence was sprung again when Jay Atkinson got through. The ball ricocheted off the keeper but it was now Lochore’s turn for a last ditch stop. Atkinson was foiled by a defender on the goal line. He conceded a corner in the process immediately after which Rangers’ three strikes in a row were blocked by home players.
The Fifers came back looking for a fifth goal. Mason stopped one effort right on his line so Calum Murray tried from near the centre circle. The longest shot of the afternoon ended up over the bar.
Tweedmouth made a game of it against a team currently lying in the East of Scotland First Division’s middle zone. A bit more conviction when chances arose would have helped though had they made it 4-3 in the final phase the tie could have been wide open.
No photographer present.