Three weeks after an 11-goal thriller at Easthouses, both sides met again, this time at New Countess Park, Dunbar, in an important League fixture, writes Laurie Wood.
Incessant rain throughout the morning made conditions difficult for both sides but the playing surface was in remarkably good condition.
Dunbar created the first chance in the eighth minute but Darren Handling missed the target by inches and two minutes later Lloyd Fiddler’s header brought a great save from goalkeeper Bryan Young.
Jordan Easton headed over for the visitors but Dunbar were forcing the pace and Handling went close again before a Chris King corner was headed against the post by Chris Moffat. The Dunbar pressure paid off in their next attack when Fiddler found Dean Ballantyne inside the box and the youngster made a yard for himself before smashing an unstoppable shot high into the net.
Three minutes later, Easthouses were awarded a penalty after Zach Szemis was adjudged to have fouled Alistair Elliot inside the box. Paul McDermott made no mistake from the spot kick to level the scores.
Easthouses then had a spell of pressure with Dunbar’s keeper John Johnstone doing well to keep the scoreline intact but, six minutes before the interval, it was Dunbar who regained the lead. Fiddler sent in an inch-perfect cross for Ballantyne to head strongly into the top corner. Almost straight away, the visitors struck as Graeme Young was on hand to fire low into the net to make it 2-2 at half time.
Once play resumed, McDermott missed a great chance for Easthouses and, at the other end, Fiddler shot wide for Dunbar. Elliot forced Johnstone into another good save for the visitors before King was very unlucky see his volley from the edge of the box strike the underside of the bar.
Just as the game looked like ending in stalemate, Dunbar scored with eight minutes left. Fraser McLaren ended a good run by crossing to the back post where Keith Tait got to the ball before Easthouses Gordon Wilson and the ball fell kindly for Ballantyne, who fired low into the net for his hat-trick. Only a great save by Johnstone denied Beattie an equaliser in the dying minutes but it was Dunbar who held on and picked up a very valuable three league points in a very tight League.
Easthouses Lily: B. Young, Easton, Brown, Wilson, Arthur, G. Young, Beattie, McDermott, Shearer, Taylor, Elliot Subs: Russell, Nethery, McIver, Burns, Hay.