Carluke Hearts AFC won the South of Scotland Cup for the first time in the club’s 18-year history with a well deserved 1-0 victory over Hawick United at Newtongrange last Friday evening.
In what was to be a hard bruising final during which no quarter was given and none asked, it was United who came near to breaking the deadlock in the opening exchanges when Liam Lavery fired over the bar.
With both sides going all out, play was fierce and keen.
There was not much hint of a goal though until Carluke struck in the 21 st minute.
Latching onto a headed Mark Telfer lay off from a Stephen Cassells cross, Steven Frame struck home an angled shot.
After United keeper Dean Fry had denied Hearts a second by saving well from Telfer, Kevin Strathdee was foiled by a Leishman stop at the other end.
In the 36th minute Carluke were reduced to 10 men when Cassells was given his marching orders for a second bookable offence.
Hearts players protested Cassell’s second yellow card but the player was dismissed.
Minutes later Kevin Paterson squandered a chance to equalise by shooting wide.
Following the changeover Hawick came out firing on all cylinders and Lavery broke clear only to have a netbound shot blocked by Leishman.
Leishmam, who was to receive the man of the match award, excelled again by brilliantly tipping a Kevin Strathdee drive over the bar.
Jonathan Wilson came to Hearts’ aid with a goal line clearance from a Paterson header. Ten man Carluke were under the cosh but were defending well.
Leishman showed his mettle again in keeping out good efforts from Lavery and Kevin Strathdee in rapid succession.
In a breakaway raid Frame dented the Hawick defence with a darting run before unleashing a shot that Fry diverted round the post.
United launched attack after attack in search of an equaliser but it was to be of no avail as that vital goal was just not to arrive.
Four minutes from time United’s Ross Scott was dismissed for a second yellow.