Linlithgow Rose were without the suspended Tommy Coyne but new signing Liam Allison featured at left back in Saturday’s 4-1 home league success over Blackburn United, writes Susan Hill.
And it was encouraging to see Roddy MacLennan take up a position on the bench – he was later to come on and score a goal – after being out injured since May.
The Rose attacked from the starting whistle and, after just three minutes, Blackburn keeper Mitchell pulled off a good save to push Ruari Maclennan’s shot wide of the target.
In the 12th minute, Allison headed over the bar, and the Rose eventually took the lead midway through the half when Allum found Hare, who had been looking dangerous, and he fired a fine low shot across keeper Mitchell into the far corner of the net.
Blackburn’s Mildren picked up the first yellow card of the match after committing a deliberate foul on Hare, and then Ruari MacLennan had the ball in the net a few minutes later, but the offside flag was up.
Ronald then had a shot stopped by Mitchell, and McDowall and Scullion were booked in separate incidents before the end of the first half.
Just minutes into the second half, a shot from Campbell looked to be going over the bar, but a late dip saw the ball crash off the crossbar.
The Rose came close to extending their lead in the 53rd minute when Ruari MacLennan was through on goal, but his shot was stopped by the keeper’s legs, and despite Allum latching on to the rebound, his shot was cleared off the line.
Allison also had an attempt stopped by Mitchell.
A free-kick from Blackburn’s McDowall was not far over the bar, but just after the hour mark, the Rose extended their lead when Allum controlled the ball well near the corner of the box and cut inside before firing a low shot into the net.
Hutton replaced Queen, and another shot from Allum was stopped by Mitchell.
In the 74th minute, the Rose went further ahead when a long ball forward found Ronald in the clear and despite looking suspiciously offside he rounded the keeper and side footed the ball into the empty net.
Blackburn immediately replaced Howe with Donnelly-Kay and Roddy MacLennan replaced Hare.
Within a couple of minutes, Roddy MacLennan made his mark on the match when he took a pass from brother Ruari and evaded a couple of challenges before slipping the ball past Mitchell for a fine goal.
Slaven then replaced Allum, and shortly afterwards, Gray was replaced by Darren Smith.
With five minutes remaining, Blackburn replaced Lawrie with Gunn, and just as it looked like the Rose would round off 2019 with a clean sheet, they were caught short at the back as the visitors broke clear on the right and when the cross came over Hutton found the net with a low shot from a tight angle.
The emphatic victory sets Rose up nicely for this Saturday’s trip to local rivals Bo’ness United.