Talbot made a number of changes to their starting line-up but still ran out comfortable winners in this South Challenge cup tie.
The first chance of the afternoon came in the 5th minute when Samson’s cross from the right was met beyond the back post by Hyslop who steered a half-volley over the bar.
Ten minutes in and the referee produced the first card of the afternoon when cautioned Baird for a late challenge on Hyslop.
A minute later Talbot had the first effort on target. Craig McCracken’s long pass found Samson on the left & he controlled it before turning his man & drilling a shot at goal from 20 yards that flew straight at McDougall.
The Bot took the lead in the 14th minute & it was a cracking goal. Hyslop found Robbie McCracken in space down the right & he carried it forward before feeding it on to Glasgow. He rolled the ball back into the path of JACK MCDOWALL who hammered a right foot drive inside the right post with the keeper spectating.
In the 22nd minute Talbot opened up the visiting defence when Wilson found Samson on the left and his ball across the face of goal fell just behind Glasgow as he raced in to tap it home.
Shanks became the 2nd West Calder player in the book when he was cautioned for dissent after 28 minutes.
Talbot appeared on easy street but a defensive fubar gifted West Calder an unlikely equaliser in the 31st minute. A high crossfield ball from the right saw ROBBIE MCCRACKEN try to head it back but with Leishman stranded off his line the header sailed inside the right post to level the score.
Two minutes later only a great stop from Leishman prevented West Calder from taking the lead. A ball in from the right found Shanks inside the area & he turned smartly before firing a shot which Leishman stretched low to his left to turn round the post.
After this wobble Talbot were back on the attack and the lead was restored in the 36th minute. Boyd retrieved an over-hit cross and teed it up for Aiden Wilson. His low drive was blocked by McDougall but KIER SAMSON was on hand to lash the rebound into the roof of the net to put Talbot 2-1 ahead.
Two minutes later Talbot added a third. AARON MASON met a ball in from the left to steer it into the far corner to make it 3-1.
Three minutes before the interval Talbot came within a whisker of grabbing their fourth. Mason got away on the right but pulled his shot across the face of goal. Boyd retrieved it on the far side & passed to Wilson whose ball across goal was met by Mason who struck it against the base of the right hand post. Talbot kept pressing but the visitors held out without conceding any further goals.
The 2nd half got off to a fairly slow start with neither side offering much of a threat. The first real opportunity came the way of West Calder in the 56th minute when Craig McCracken conceded a free kick just outside the penalty area resulting in a booking for Talbot’s centre-half. Shanks too it but his shot hit a Bot player and went behind for the corner.
Talbot then turned defence into attack as they broke away on the counter from the corner through Mason who was up-ended by Gillespie who was booked for his challenge. Mason took the resultant free kick and swept a good ball in from the right which McDowall headed just past the left post.
The game was over as a contest on the hour mark when Talbot got their fourth of the afternoon. WILLIE BOYD cut in off the left wing & passed it toward goal where it trundled past the keeper with the aid of a slight deflection off Livingstone.
Tucker now made a change with Shankland coming on for Glasgow.
In the 61st minute Talbot won a penalty and the visitors were reduced to ten men. Mason got free down the right & his ball across goal was blocked by the arm of Gillespie. He’d already been booked so made the short walk to the clubhouse after his 2nd yellow and AARON MASON gave the keeper no chance from the spot – burying his penalty inside the right post to make it 5-1 to Talbot.
Mason nearly had his hat-trick in the 65th minute. Boyd came in on off the left & curled over a right foot cross that Mason glanced off the left hand post.
Two minutes later Talbot did move further ahead. A deep cross found Craig McCracken beyond the far post and he headed it back across goal where KIER SAMSON ran onto it to nod home from close range.
The scoring was completed in the 69th minute. Shankland delivered an inch perfect cross from the left and DWAYNE HYSLOP guided a header back across goal and inside the right post to put Talbot 7-1 ahead.
In the 74th minute Talbot made their 2nd change with Healy on in midfield in place of Boyd.
Talbot had a chance soon after to extend their lead when Samson raced away on the right before laying it inside to Mason. He touched it on to McDowall whose shot flew across goal and wide of the right post.
With 10 minutes remaining Talbot made their final change with McDowall making way for White.
In the closing minutes Talbot came close on two occasions. Firstly, Shankland met Wilson’s cross only to see his header come back off the crossbar and a minute later a short corner from the right saw Robbie McCracken cross it into the centre where Healy directed a free header over the bar.
A convincing win for Talbot who will face a totally different challenge next Saturday when they host Hamilton Accies in the senior cup.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Robbie McCracken, Wilson, Armstrong, Craig McCracken, McDowall, Boyd, Hyslop, Samson, Mason, Glasgow
Subs – Boylan, Shankland, Healy, Lyle, White, Hewitt
West Calder United – McDougall, Gillespie, Wilson, Shanks, Taylor, Livingstone, Baird, Easton, Macauley, Fallon, Stevenson
Subs – Hay, Johnston, Kennedy, Miller, Wilkins
PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
|November 20, 2021||14:00||SOUTH REGION CHALLENGE CUP||2021/22|
|15||Kieran Healy 7||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|17||Steven White 6||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|12||Mark Shankland 11||Forward||0||1||0||0|
|11||Jamie Glasgow 12||Midfielder||0||1||0||0|
|7||Willie Boyd 15||Midfielder||1||0||0||0|
|6||Jack McDowall 17||Midfielder||1||0||0||0|
West Calder United