Kilsyth Rangers moved through to the second round of the Central League Cup with a fine 1-0 win away to Clydebank on Saturday.
The win, at a venue which is always a difficult one to get a result, took Rangers into the next stage of the only cup competition in which they retain an interest.
It was far from easy though as, after taking an early lead, Rangers had to go on the defensive for most of the game, which they did outstandingly well.
There was a fairly even start to the game but after only five minutes Kilsyth went in front.
Gary Livingstone made a good run down the right and crossed the ball into the ‘Bankies goal area for Paul McBride to head past Robert Tiropoulos.
Clydebank responded with some good play and Chris Prior was soon being called upon to make a few saves, although mostly it was resolute defending and poor finishing that was keeping his goal intact.
Livingstone was receiving a fair bit of abuse from the home fans for his robust play and he was shown a yellow card eventually by the fairly tolerant referee.
Rangers’ own attacks were fairly sporadic, although Corey Pearson had a very good attempt that was blocked, then eventually cleared, in a scramble in the home goalmouth.
Rangers still held on to their narrow lead come the half-time whistle.
The first few minutes of the second half were again even but gradually Clydebank regained their dominance of the play with wing player Mark Burbridge posing quite a few problems for the Rangers defence.
It was coping pretty well though and Prior had few direct shots to deal with, although he was nearly caught out when he failed to clear the ball quickly enough on one occasion.
With the home fans getting increasingly restless their manager eventually made a double substitution, bringing on Greg Cree and Joel Kasubandi who had scored such a spectacular goal in the clubs’ league encounter at Duncansfield just a few weeks ago.
This time he made very little impression on the game though and Rangers were holding out well despite Clydebank keeping up almost non-stop pressure.
Rangers also made changes, newcomer Clougherty replaced Livingstone, then Welsh replaced Pearson.
The game was nearing its climax with Clydebank throwing everything forward in the final stages, but Rangers were holding on, if only just, and making every attempt to frustrate them.
Hamilton replaced Barclay in the last few seconds and after what seemed an age the final whistle blew and Rangers were through, a hard earned, but very deserved win.
Kilsyth: Prior, Waters, K McBride, Doyle, Smith, McGee, Livingstone, Pearson, Barclay, P McBride, O’Neill. Subs: Hamilton, welsh, Prentice, Hogg. Clougherty.
Clydebank: Tiripoulos, Lyden, Paterson, Mort, Gow, Vezza, burbridge, Barclay, Young, Little, Holmes. Subs: Kasubandi, Cree, Halliday, Shelvey, Lumsden.
This Saturday Rangers travel to face Maybole in a Super League First Division fixture, kick-off 2pm.