A Scott Pryde hat trick edges Hearts closer to regaining the title.

Saturday 14th May 2011.

Kingdom Caledonian League.

Cupar Hearts continued their quest to regain the League Championship last Saturday when visitors to Duffus Park were Strathmiglo United. It was an entertaining but goalless first half and it looked as though a single goal could seal the points. This wasn’t to be the case however with Scott Pryde scoring an excellent hat trick and an Iain O’Leary double to give Hearts the victory.

Strath were first on the attack with Lee White and his cross was met by Martin Dickson waiting in the area but he couldn’t direct the ball on target. Then Iain O’Leary for Hears had a good shot tipped round the post. The following corner was cleared by Aaron Anderson resulting in another corner kick but Barry Sibanda’s eventual header went wide. Cupar came close on 16 minutes when an excellent Iain Boylan strike came crashing off the crossbar. Moments later a foul on Boylan by Steven Patrick gave Hearts a free kick opportunity but Stephen Gilfillan’s shot was easily saved. Then Cupar had a penalty claim after Barry Sibanda was pushed over in the box but it was waved away by the referee. At the other end Lee White sent in a free kick after a foul by Stephen Gilfillan but he made amends when he cleared the danger. Barry Sibanda would have the last say of the half when he headed over after a Neale Smith corner. And so the sides went into break all square.

The scoring was eventually opened 11 minutes into the second half but it was the visiting side who took the lead when Lee White blasted the ball past ‘keeper Steven McEwan. This kicked Hearts into gear and straight from the restart good work by Iain Boylan and Barry Sibanda created a corner kick. Neale Smith whipped the resulting corner into the box where Iain O’Leary was waiting to head the ball off the inside of the cross bar and in to equalize. The same player would put Cupar in front when he fired home after 62 minutes but took an injury in doing so and was soon replaced by Gary Reilly. Three minutes later Cupar Hearts took complete control of the game when they went further ahead. Great work by Iain Boylan with an excellent through ball set up Scott Pryde and his effort found the roof of the net. It didn’t take him long to double his tally with a good goal 4 minutes later and then with 14 minutes remaining he completed his well deserved hat trick. He did well to get up to meet a Gary Reilly cross and headed the ball past Jamie Gibson to give Hearts an important three points.

Cupar: McEwan, Makein, Gilfillan, Anderson (C), Nicoll, McInroy, Smith, Boylan, O’Leary, Sibanda and Pryde. Subs: Campbell, Fraser, Watson, M. Reilly, G. Reilly, Halley and MacPhee.

Ceres Butchers meat tray winner was Mike Spence (Strathmiglo)