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Millburn Park, Leven Street, Alexandria, Dunbartonshire
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Port Glasgow 0-2 Vale of Leven
Vale scorers: Ward 32 & 58 mins.
Man of the Match: Kevin Goodwin
Saturday 10th August, 2002. Kick off: 3.00pm
Match played at Millburn Park.
Beatons Coaches Sectional League Cup - Group 8

Hugh Hamill's men recorded a second win of the week at sun soaked Millburn on Saturday. The Vale boss was without several players due to injury (Jim Meechan), suspension (Brian Wardle) and holidays (Anton Brown, Alex Lacy & Bryan Boal) and gave a debut to defender Paul Barton from Helensburgh. Graeme McKenzie started his second match after signing from Kilbirnie Ladeside.

"Port", who missed out on promotion in the last game of the season, came to Millburn hoping to avenge some heavy cup defeats from Vale last year and they started well with Diamond heading wide after only 10 minutes.

The Millburn men finally came to life after 15 minutes when McKenzie won the ball and released Ward whose low shot narrowly flew wide of target. Three minutes later following a neat move down the right Scott McKernan's stinging left foot shot was saved by the diving Conway in the "Port" goal.

  Hugh Ward
A double for
Hugh Ward


McKernan won a corner after 24 minutes and from Brown's flag kick Brian Smith stooped to sent a headed crashing off the crossbar before being scrambled clear. After 28 minutes Alan Brown played a ball over the top which was well controlled by the in-form Ward but unfortunately his lobbed shot again lacked accuracy. Vale were at this stage so much on top but a minute later they were slack in defence when Goodwin headed back to keeper Rogers but McKay nipped in and tumbled over the Vale keeper. A soft penalty it was but justice was done when McKay smashed his kick high over the bar.

Boosted by their good fortune Vale edged ahead after 32 minutes with a stunning goal from HUGH WARD. The striker collected McKernan's pass and ran at the "Port" rearguard who were fooled by McKernan's decoy run; Ward then sent a powerful left foot shot into the net from just outside the area.

"Port's" Brown almost produced an equaliser a couple of minutes later when he turned inside the area and his close range shot was expertly tipped over by Vale keeper Rogers. The half closed with strong claims for a Vale penalty when a quick break saw McKenzie race clear into the area only to be sent crashing as Foreman tried to get back to tackle.

Vale doubled their lead 13 minutes into the second half when Hunter cut in from the right to fire in a shot that Conway could only parry but unfortunately for him HUGH WARD was on hand to stab the rebound into the net for his second goal of the afternoon.

The remainder of the second half was fairly even as "Port" attempted to salvage something from the match but on the one occasion they managed to get in a decent effort, Rogers got down to push Walker's shot around the post.

Vale can be pleased with the win that takes them top of the group and in with a chance of making the quarter finals for the third year in a row.


Team: Rogers; Barton, Deeley, Goodwin: Hunter (George), Brown, Smith, King, McKenzie; McKernan (Wilson), Ward. Unused subs: Maclaurin and Pursey.
 
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