University get it all too easy.
It would be fair to say that the Shipyard did not deserve to lose 5-0 but if you do not take your chances and defend poorly then that is what can happen. Too many times when the Shipyard got into good positions the wrong option was taken and defensively you only had to look at the desire the University defence showed in the last minute to keep a clean sheet as they threw their bodies in front of the ball to make a block. Andy Macdonald returned to the squad after his recent back injury, as did Ethan Anderson who was out with a foot problem and Kevin Masson returned after being unavailable last week. JP McPhail was still injured and Pete Bell was on holiday.
Heriot Watt started the better side and in the first minute the Shipyard defence had to scramble the ball away after Sean Muhsin’s header across the six yard line caused panic. Muhsin tried his luck in the 10th minute but his shot from distance cleared the bar. The Shippy were very unlucky not to take the lead a few minutes later when a Shaun Keatings pass set up Adam Doig. Craig Saunders managed to get a fingertip onto the ball which diverted it onto the inside of the post and Doig looked on in amazement as the ball then spun away from the goal line then out for a corner. Joe Samson from one side and Keatings from the other both put in fabulous corners but no Shipyard players attacked the ball when any sort of touch would surely have led to a goal. The visitors would show how to do it later in the match. Keatings was heavily involved in the action and his placed shot from the corner of the box was not too far away. Muhsin for the visitors was giving the Shipyard defence problems and his shot from the edge of the area was about a foot wide. His teammate Cameron Stevenson was also not far away with a well hit effort. Keatings saw his strike charged down inside the Uni box but within seconds the Shipyard were behind when Scott Dargo poked the ball home after the home defence failed to clear their lines. The Uni doubled their lead a few minutes later when Chris Donnelly ran onto a through ball and finished clinically.
Any hope the Shipyard had of taking something out of the match disappeared in the 49th minute when a corner, the same quality of the Shipyard ones mentioned previously, was headed home by Donnelly as he attacked the ball with purpose. It became 4-0 in the 57th minute when a free-kick driven into the Shipyard box found Andy Forbes unmarked and the slight touch he got with his head was enough to beat Jordan Mushet in the Shipyard goal. The Shipyard should have been awarded a penalty in the 68th minute when Doig was impeded but the referee must have been unsighted from the distance he was away from the incident as he waved the strong claims away. Craig Lowe was unlucky on two occasions as firstly his net bound shot was blocked and then his headed effort from a free-kick was well saved by Saunders. Heriot Watt got their fifth goal in the 87th minute when again the home defence failed to clear and substitute Elliot Sutherland was on hand to knock the ball home. Shipyard substitute Masson had earlier efforts blocked but in the last minute Heriot Watt showed what a clean sheet meant to them as they somehow blocked his fierce shot from around eight yards out.
Caretaker manager James Lock spent a while in the dressing room with his players before emerging to say “I’m very disappointed in the manner of the result today. While Heriot Watt played well, we lost it and gave the win away through silly mistakes to start off with, and then from a loss of discipline. We have an issue with turning on each other when things don’t go our way and this isn’t right. To then have a player sent off after he had left the pitch for dissent isn’t acceptable at all and we have to understand this and improve going forwards”. Looking ahead James added “We’ve got a very tough few games coming up against the Spartans Lowland League side, then against Ormiston and Peebles. We need to be together and united in those games to be able to perform, so will be looking for a reaction in the next week”.
Burntisland Shipyard: J. Mushet; B. Rogerson (A. Clark); C. Samson (E. Anderson); B. Smart; T. Arthur; B. Napier; S. Keatings; C. Lowe; A. Doig; E. Henderson (K. Masson); D. Robertson. Unused Sub: A. MacDonald.
Heriot Watt University: C. Saunders; A. Scott; N. Laurenson; D. Kerr; J. Hume; A. Forbes; S. Dargo; R. Service; C. Donnelly; S. Muhsin; C. Stevenson (E. Stevenson). Subs: M. Green; S. Wright; S. Davies.
Referee: B. Cooper.