Saturday 19 November 2016, 13.45, Penicuik Park
Junior Cup third round match between East Superleague side Penicuik Athletic and Scone Thistle of the East Region North Division.
It’s my fourth viewing of Penicuik this season, who go into the cup game in fourth place in the league. After receiving a bye in the first round, they won at Craigmark Burntonians by four goals to nil in the second round.
I can’t recall having seen Scone Thistle before. Founded in 1882 they are the oldest Perthshire Junior football club. Beginning in the Perthshire Junior leagues, they became members of the Perthshire Juvenile Football Association after the resumption of the first world war. This was for players up to the age of 27.
They remained in Juvenile football until 1983 when they won the Scottish Juvenile Cup and subsequently returned to the ranks of Junior football.
They played in the Tayside Premier League of the Juniors Eastern Region until league restructuring in the 2006–07 when they became part of the East Region Premier League. Relegation soon followed to the East Region Central Division.
They spent season 2011–12 in abeyance before returning the following year.
One of Scone’s claims to fame is that George Best turned out for the club in a guest appearance in 1982.
They currently sit in seventh in the fifteen team league and like Penicuik, got a bye in the first round of the Junior Cup this year. They won 5-2 at Inverness City to set up the tie with Penicuik.
In the week leading up to the game, Scone made loan signings of two of Forfar Athletic’s youngsters, with central midfielder Andrew Mackenzie, and left midfielder Max Avolio signing on. Avolio had been on trial at Scone before signing for Forfar and his brother Lewis is at the club.
There were around 200 in the ground as the game kicked off.
The home side started strongly and nearly took the lead in the second minute. Scott crossed from the right after beating MacDonald and found Lough inside the six-yard box and the striker connected with his knee, but it was straight at Winton, who caught the ball.
There was a half chance for Scone in 7 minutes when Young’s headed clearance came to Moffat, who tried to lift the ball over the keeper from 25 yards out, but Bejaoui managed to catch comfortably.
Jancyzk made a good interception in 9 minutes and played a clever pass inside to Scott. His shot from 20 yards was taken low down by Winton in the Scone goal.
Noble was the next to intercept a Scone pass, reading Whitworth’s ball out of defence in 13 minutes and he quickly curled the ball into the middle where Laing managed to clear over his own bar.
Scone’s Moffat had to go off and change his shirt in 14 minutes. I assume he had been bleeding.
In 19 minutes, some good build up play by Scone ended with Mills finding Moffat on the edge of the Penicuik box, but his low shot was wide.
The ball was bobbling around in the Scone box in 20 minutes following a Sproule cross and it fell to the feet of Lough, but Winton blocked his shot with his legs.
Moon did very well to head away Scott’s cross into the Scone box in 24 minutes, under pressure in front of his own goal.
Moffat won Scone a free kick on the left in 27 minutes and Fergus’ delivery into the box was just too far in front of Moffat at the back post.
Penicuik won a free kick in 33 minutes and Jancyzk found Forbes at the back post. His strike hit Whitworth and fell perfectly for Winton to smother.
Nije won the ball for Scone in 38 minutes and sent a through ball for Mills to run onto, but Bejaoui was out quickly to clear.
Scone escaped a handball claim in the box in 40 minutes, but a penalty award would have been very harsh.
Penicuik attacked again in 41 minutes and Scott found McCallum free in the box, but the flag was up for offside.
Right on half time, Forbes played a fine ball to Montgomery on the left and his cross was powerfully headed home at the near post by McCallum to give Penicuik the lead. McCallum took a knock to the face from the head of Laing as he scored, but was ok to continue.
A sore one to take for Scone who had battled well in the first half against higher league opponents. Penicuik had started well, but looked to have been running out of ideas and there was always a threat on the break.
Right at the start of the second half, Sproule burst down the right for Penicuik to receive McCallum’s pass and his cross to the front post seemed to be right on the head of Scott, but he didn’t make contact.
Scone had a chance when Nije robbed Young of the ball in 58 minutes on the by-line and he cutback for MacKenzie whose shot was stopped on the line by Forbes.
In 60 minutes, Lough played the ball wide to Montgomery as Penicuik came forward. His ball into the middle was dummied by Barr, but the defence managed to clear behind.
Some good passing by Penicuik created another chance in 61 minutes, but when McCallum found Barr in the box, he shot over.
A fine cross by Scott into the Scone box in 66 minutes reached Barr at the front post, but Winton managed to block from close range.
Young was forced to go off with blood pouring from his nose in 73 minutes and was replaced soon after.
A good ball into the Scone box by Gay in 77 minutes found Lough at the back post, but the Penicuik striker took a heavy touch and Winton claimed the ball.
Scone broke quickly in 81 minutes and Avolio cut inside from the left but saw his shot turned behind by Bejaoui.
A minute later, Nije’s ball into the Penicuik box took a deflection and went just wide of the post with Bejaoui scrambling across his goal.
A Scone free kick near the corner flag in 83 minutes picked out the head of Mitchell in the box, but with the goal at his mercy, he headed narrowly wide.
There was then a brief halt in proceedings as a dog came onto the pitch.
The next goalmouth action came in 87 minutes and following the canine encounter, the woof fell in on Scone. Lough held the ball up well and played the ball wide right to Gay. He put in a great ball into the box where Lough headed in from close range.
Penicuik were the better side, but didn’t create that many clear-cut chances. Scone always looked as if they might snatch a draw, but a late goal in each half saw the home side through to the next round.
Jancyzk and Montgomery showed some nice touches in Penicuik’s midfield and Lough held the ball up well up front. Although he is only making cameo appearances these days, Gay’s crossing ability was evident when he came on. Scone’s Fergus in defensive midfield had a fine game and Laing impressed at centre half. Playing against forwards much taller than him, he didn’t seem out of place. Nije also looked to have good ability.
Full Time: Penicuik Athletic 2 Scone Thistle 0
Penicuik Athletic: 18 Yossi Bejaoui, 2 Wayne Sproule, 3 Steven Noble, 4 Andy Forbes, 5 Darrell Young (Sommerville 76), 6 Neil Jancyzk, 7 Kyle Scott (Gay 67), 8 Lewis Barr, 9 Ryan McCallum, 10 Keith Lough, 11 Ross Montgomery. Subs: 12 Aaron Somerville, 14 Craig Hume, 15 Stephen Scott, 16 Ryan Gay.
Scone Thistle: 1 David Winton, 2 Stephen Moon, 3 Fraser MacDonald, 4 Sean Whitworth, 5 Willie Laing, 6 Craig Mitchell, 7 Abdourahman Nije, 8 Sean Fergus, 9 Fraser Mills (MacKenzie 53), 10 Gary Mackie (Hynd 53), 11 Ben Moffat (M Avolio 63). Subs: 12 Derek Angus, 14 Lewis Avolio, 15 Max Avolio, 16 Kenneth Hynd, 17 Andrew MacKenzie.
Referee: Peter Stuart