Shippy lose as Leith secure title.
Leith duly wrapped up the league title but it was not until the 70th minute that they were able to breech a stubborn Shipyard defence and another goal two minutes later made sure the title was secured with a game to play. Shippy manager Raymond Drury had the rare luxury of being able to name five substitutes, however, who would have thought that Ethan Anderson’s sub appearance would have lasted all of thirty seconds as he pulled up with a hamstring injury.
Leith took the game by the scruff of the neck from the outset and dominated possession though clear cut chances were at a premium with Shippy keeper Mark Rowbotham only having two saves of note to make in the first half, the first blocking with his legs from Lewis Martin and the second pushing a Kerr Allan shot round the post. From the resultant corner Neil Lowson headed over from around six yards. For the Shipyard a Conor Drury corner almost dropped in at the far post and a Kevin Masson strike was held by visiting keeper Iain Gordon.
The Shipyard were dealt a blow at the start of the second half when Adam Doig fell awkwardly, injuring his shoulder and he was replaced by the luckless Anderson. Before Anderson left the field seconds later, Gavin Kneeshaw might have done better for Leith rather than blasting over from a decent position. Andy MacDonald headed a goal bound effort off the line as Leith searched for the elusive opening goal and it finally arrived on the 70 minute mark when Martin drove forward, evaded a couple of tackles and placed a left foot strike into the bottom corner. The visitors seemed relieved to get the opener and they doubled their lead soon after when Rowbotham failed to deal with a James Hainey strike and could only push the ball toward goal and despite his valiant effort to keep it out the linesman correctly gave the goal. Lowson again headed over from a corner before the Shipyard were reduced to ten men when Drury was shown a second yellow card for showing his frustrations after being flagged offside. The home team got back into the match with 12 minutes remaining when Iain Millar got on the end of a Masson free-kick and nodded the ball into the corner of the net. Dead ball specialist Masson had an opportunity from 25 yards but the wall done its job and blocked his powerful strike. Leith made sure of the points and the title in added time as they made it 3-1 from the penalty spot through Scott Wilson after Rowbotham had tripped the Leith forward at the corner of the six yard box. Raymond said after the match “I knew it was going to be tough tonight and so it proved. We done well for seventy minutes and there was a glimmer of hope when Big Millsy pulled the goal back but at the end of the day Leith deserved their win and congratulations to them on being champions”.
Burntisland Shipyard: M. Rowbotham; C. Lowe; R. McCann (E. Henderson); I. Millar; B. Couper; P. Bell; C. Drury; A. MacDonald; K. Masson; M. James; A. Doig (E. Anderson) (G. McCann). Unused Subs: B. Saunders & G. Haywood.
Leith Athletic: I. Gordon; T. Black; K. Fee; N. Lowson; S. Melvin; S. Murphy; L. Martin; K. Allan (J. Hainey); J. Ferguson (C. Beaton); G. Kneeshaw (L. Tracey); S. Wilson. Unused Subs: D. Simpson & N. Fairnie.
Referee: B. Cooper.