Vale of Earn got the better of local rivals Strathearn Grove in Saturday’s eagerly-anticipated derby clash.
In what was the first competitive action for either side following the winter break, visiting Vale attacked first and scored almost immediately when Daniel Harrison’s deep cross to the far post was met by Peter Reilly to volley past Grove keeper Young.
The Market Park side’s lead was doubled midway through the first half when Ross Brock rose unopposed to head the ball into the net from Harrison’s free kick.
Vale were enjoying most of the possession but Grove were always dangerous and began to get a foothold into the game pulling one back when Graeme Walker, in an unfamiliar midfield role, played in Colin Cruickshanks who beat Vale keeper Yurdakol with a low shot into the bottom right hand corner.
A further opportunity was created for Grove when Walker played a cross in from the right hand side but as it looked like Patrick Ward would head home, Vale’s Kieron O’Donnell cleared the ball – ending up in the net himself.
And just as it looked like the Braidhaugh boys would reach half-time still in the game, they were dealt a blow when Danny Harrison drove at their defence, beating two defenders, before passing to Jamie Henry who scored from close range putting Vale 3-1 up at the break.
In the second half, Vale’s Graham Abernethy was unlucky to see his shot come back off the post after a previous effort had hit the bar.
Young was producing some fine saves to deny Vale and it was late in day when the game was finally killed off after a shot saved by Young pitched up nicely for Reilly to head home for his second of the day.
Grove substitute Che Bennett had an opportunity when he managed to force his way into the box but a well timed tackle from the impressive Vale fullback David Young prevented a shot on goal.
The scoring was completed when Martin Cooper’s corner was met by Ross Brock, who rifled the ball into the goal past the unsighted Young to see the game end 5-1.
Teams: Vale of Earn – Yurdakol, Ritchie, O’Donnell, Brock, Sinclair, Abernethy, Cassidy, Klawikowski, (Cooper, Henry, Welsh), Reilly, Harrison, (C Stewart). Sub G Brock.
Strathearn Grove - Young, Fyfe, Graham Walker, Duncan, Mathieson, Cruickshanks, Graeme Walker, Deacon, Douglas, Cramb, Ward. Subs: Bennett, McGougan, Scott, Welsh, Gannon.