Oakley 1-4 Newtongrange Star: Star go top of Conference A

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Newtongrange Star moved one point clear of Penicuik Athletic at the top of Conference A after a comfortable 4-1 victory over Oakley in Fife.

Goals from Scott, O’Hara, Hunter and Richardson ensured the points headed back to New Victoria Park.

With the reverse fixture resulting in a draw, Star knew this would be a tight match and so it proved early on.

However, Star took the lead after 31 minutes following a terrific move which was finished off by Forster curling an unstoppable effort into the top corner.

Star doubled their advantage after 41 minutes when a cross into the box was adjudged to have been handled. O’Hara, back on penalty duties, slotted the ball past Robertson low into his right-hand corner.

Oakley dragged themselves back into it after 43 minutes when a high, looping cross found McAteer rising above Young to head the ball past Renton. Oakley, buoyed by their goal, came out strong at the start of the second half. A long ball over the top caught the Star defence out and McAteer raced clear before producing a brilliant save from Renton.

O’Hara blocked a goal-bound effort from Murray before Swaney did brilliantly to head the ball off the line after Greig had flicked a corner over Renton as Oakley ramped up the pressure.

However, Star came close after 53 minutes when O’Hara fired a ball across the six-yard box which evaded both Hunter and Forster, before Oakley’s task was made all but insurmountable when they were reduced to ten men when McMillan was shown a second yellow followed by the subsequent red for a bad foul in the middle of the park.

Richardson came close with a curling effort after 58 minutes before Hunter smashed Star further in front three minutes later.

McAteer, who was by far Oakley’s most dangerous player, slalomed through the Star rear-guard after 73 minutes. After doing the hard work, he pulled his shot wide of the target.

Star put the icing on the cake after 79 minutes when a superb Sclater cross was met with the head of the diving Richardson who bulleted the ball past Robertson.

Star: Renton, Swaney (Sclater 71), Mitchell, Young, O’Hara, Melvin, Scott (Bracks 64), Forster (Lowson 71), Thomson, Hunter, Richardson.