Andy Forbes struck decisively to move Penicuik Athletic to the top of the East Superleague after a 1-0 win over Forfar West End.
After an early pitch inspection, the game was given the go ahead despite the heavy rain. Penicuik took a while to settle but after a few nervy moments early on they started to produce the passing game they are renowned for.
In the 20th minute, a Forbes pass set Mendes free. He got round the back of the defence but his hard low cross back across the box was cut out by keeper Burns.
Desperate defending by Forfar saw a Forbes effort blocked and the rebound clipped over the crossbar.
The second half continued in the same vein as the first 45 minutes with Penicuik dominating play with the home side defending well.
However, in the 58th minute Jones’s cross found McCrory-Irving on the far side of the box. He laid the ball back to Forbes who curled a great strike past keeper Burns to open the scoring.
One minute later, Forfar full back McDonald, who had been booked in the first half, was sent for an early bath after a second yellow card.
Penicuik now had the upper hand and were pushing hard for a second goal but despite being down to ten men, The Forfar defence was proving to be a hard nut to crack. In the 72nd minute, following a corner to Penicuik, Ponton had a chance but his effort flew high over the bar.
Minutes later, McCrory-Irving got past Robertson on the right wing and his low cross along the six-yard box found Sampson, but keeper Burns was on hand to mop up the danger. The play switched immediately to the other end and it was keeper Allison’s turn to dive at the feet of the incoming striker to save.
In a rare Forfar attack, a hook shot from the edge of touch line looped narrowly over the crossbar with Allison looking on anxiously.
Almost on full time, an excellent pass by Sampson split the home defence, but Burns pulled off a great save to deny Jamieson. Then a late chance fell to Forfar, but A Walls saw his effort sail high over the bar. Into injury time and an off-the-ball flare-up saw Penicuik’s Hamilton red carded.