Preston Athletic 2 – 2 Vale of Leithen
Ferrari Packaging Lowland League
The kick off was slightly delayed as referee Stewart Luke was caught up in traffic and arrived late. When the teams came out a minutes silence was observed to remember Jimmy Watters who had served the club for many years.
Vale, under new manager Mickey Lawson, were quick out the traps and were ahead within a minute. A good passing move was brought to a halt when Jack Thomson fouled James Elliot in the area and the referee had no hesitation in awarding the spot kick. Robbie Ross converted sending Chris Flockhart the wrong way. The remainder of the half turned into a midfield battle with only a handful of chances created by either side, Josh McGonigal had the best chance with a neat turn and shot that went just wide.
Preston came out with purpose in the 2nd half and McGonigal again came close with a cross shot that flashed across the face of goal. The home side continued to press but it was Vale who extended their lead on the hour as a deflected shot bounced up perfectly for Ross to head backwards and over the advancing Flockhart for his second of the match.
Preston’s fightback started within a few minutes as a great run and pass across goal by Gary Nicholson found Juan Belope (Jordi) racing in at the back post to tap home. The striker then scored the equaliser after latching onto a loose pass, neatly rounded both a defender and keeper before tapping home his 3rd goal in 2 games.
The home side missed a number of chances to win, but also nearly lost the match as Chris Flockhart had to dive full length to save a powerful header which he managed to push onto the post and out to safety.
Preston Athletic: Flockhart, L.Todd, Porcher, Manson, Moffat, J.Todd, Aithchison, Thomson, Belope, McGonigal, Martin. Subs: McSherry, Page, Nicholson, Coull, Morrison, Beaton, Baillie.
Vale of Leithen: McQueen, Sclater, Brady, Lynch, Elliot, McLeod, Hunter, McIntosh, Ross, McLeod, Gallacher. Subs: Elliot, Flanagan, Stevens, Urquart, Guy, Rixon.