Sport East of Scotland League: Praise for Lewis Payne after striker returns from injury to make it 17 wins in a row for Linlithgow Rose
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A first-half header from Connor McMullan and late strike from Payne gave Rose a 2-1 win over Tynecastle at Meggetland means Rose are now just two points behind leaders Penicuik in a fascinatingtitle race.
Payne was signed from Kennoway Star Hearts in November as a replacement for Tommy Coyne and made an instant impact before picking up an injury.
“He came in absolutely flying with four goals in two games and then picked up what looked like a serious knee injury against Newtongrange.
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“He’s been out with that and Covid as well. So for Lewis to come back, play like that and score the winner is fantastic. I’m delighted for him.”
Whitehill Welfare moved off the bottom for the first time all season with a stunning 1-0 win over fourth-placed Musselburgh Athletic at Olivebank.
The hosts had Declan O’Kane sent off early in the second half and Whitehill capitalised a few minutes later when a low Liam Ireland free-kick drifted into the net.
Newtongrange Star picked up a point in a 1-1 draw at Dunbar United thanks to a Steven Froude penalty in the 70th minute.
Dunbar had taken the lead 13 minutes earlier with Darren Smith’s first goal for the club.
Elsewhere, Sandy Cunningham scored twice, one of them from the penalty spot, and Errol Douglas also found the net in Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale’s topsy-turvy 3-3 draw at Blackburn United.
Penicuik ace Dave Edwards issues title-race warning after recent stumble
Dave Edwards says he and his Penicuik Athletic team-mates can’t afford to drop many more points if they wish to end the season as East of Scotland Premier champions.Ahead of a Midlothian derby down the road at Rosewell against Whitehill Welfare – who are fighting for their lives at the bottom of the table – Edwards insists they must get back to winning ways quickly.
The West Lothian side came from behind twice and led once, Callum Heath grabbing a brace, including a fine free-kick.
Michael Browne’s penalty for Blackburn in the 72nd minute secured the draw.
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