Star kick off the new season with a win over Bluebell

Action from Newtongrange v Dundonald Bluebell
Action from Newtongrange v Dundonald Bluebell

Two stunning goals by Dale O’Hara and skipper Brian Murray saw Newtongrange get off to a great start in the new Super League season.

It was a hard-fought victory for Stevie McLeish’s men over the Fifers in a game which saw the Star miss a crucial penalty which could have eased the second half pressure when they were a 1-0 ahead.

With the hosts desperate to start off the season on the front foot in the fifth minute a Brian Murray cross from the left flank found Kenny O’Brien but he hit the chance wide.

It was an end-to-end battle but on 18 minutes the Star’s first corner saw a Ryan Porteous’ header blocked on the goalline with keeper Jim Lennox beaten.

A Scott Lawrie free kick for the Bluebell hit the Star post and the rebound put over the bar by Bluebell’s Ross Drummond.

But it was at the other end that a superb shot from distance by Dale O’Hara stormed into the Fifers’ net.

Approaching half time it could have been two to the Star as first Kyle Scott swept a ball across the face of the goal to be picked up at the far end by Brian Murray whose cross also flew through the visiting penalty box there were no takers either way.

Within a minute of the restart a booking for Dundonald’s Adam Moffat set the tone for a battling second half.

A good cross in 48 minutes from Scott Swanney saw the Ryan Porteous header land on the roof of the net.

On 60 minutes, a Brian Murray free kick had hit the Dundonald defensive wall but in ensuing play Dundonald failed to clear their lines 
under pressure and keeper Lennox bundled Jack Wilson to the ground earning a booking for his protests at the penalty award only for Lennox to deny Wilson’s spot kick with a save to continue the tightly fought contest.

Star made it 2-0 on 76 minutes when a cross from the right found its way through to skipper Brian Murray at the far side and his stunning volley crashed into the Dundonald net to clinch the points.

Star: Renton, Swanney, Murray, Melville, Mitchell, K.Scott, O’Hara, Bracks, O’Brien, Wilson, Porteous. Subs: Amos, Lowson, Wilkie, S.Scott, Lander.