West Lothian gents suffered a shock horror start to their Premier League campaign with the seven times previous champions crashing to a 13 shot defeat (84-71) on home territory to newly promoted West of Scotland.
The new boys on the block could well have been overawed by entering the lion’s den to face the high profile gladiators that populate the Inveralmond Stadium but it was them that did the mauling and fully deserved to bask in the glory of a winners applause.
West Lothian did fire on two of their four cylinders with winning performances served up by the rinks skipped by Craig Moss and James Speirs but flat batteries on the rinks skipped by Neil Speirs and Mark Allison were severely punished. Even so the stuttering home team were still in a winnable position entering the third and final phase and just four shots adrift but the expected charge to victory failed to materialise with the saddened home support forced to witness a further nine shot capitulation. The phase scorings being; 25-23; 23-29; 23-32 while the end count was 46/38 in favour of the visitors.
The visitors landed a major blow to the morale of the home side with their rink skipped by S O’Donnell dishing out 25-12 pasting of icon figure Neil Speirs and his front-three of Bryan Cooper, Connor McKendrick, and Des Hagart. The home rinks 9-1 collapse when the chips were down on the final phase doesn’t make good reading for a rink expected to deliver wins on their home carpet.
Mark Allison and his rink of Ian Drysdale, Raymond Logan, and Cameron Greer also suffered an uncomfortable time of it having only managed to register shots on six of the 21- ends en-route to a damaging 28-12 defeat from Grier McDougall.
Craig Moss delivered a heads up performance to skip George Sneddon, Blair Mackie, and Jamie Aitken to a 25-16 win over Jonathan Ross and that result was supported by a 22-15 win for Richard Mark, Jamie Edwards, Gary Orr, and James Speirs over B Glynne. The other results in the A Division were, Elgin 85 Lanarkshire 87; Falkirk 89 Aberdeen 60.
WL get an immediate chance to atone in front of their depressed support this Saturday as they have home environment advantage against albeit stronger formline opposition in the shape of Falkirk. Selectors Bryan Cooper and Neil Speirs bring in Dougie Mitchell for Blair Mackie and have tinkered with the make up of all four rinks. Rink 1. George Sneddon, Dougie Mitchell, Jamie Aitken, Craig Moss (skip). Rink 2. Richard Mark, Connor McKendrick, Gary Orr, James Speirs (skip). Rink 3. Jamie Edwards, Ian Drysdale (cpt), Cameron Greer, Mark Allison (skip). Rink4. Bryan Cooper, Raymond Logan, Des Hagart, Neil Speirs (skip).
Balbardie gents hit the ground running in their home match against Headwell in Division 1 North with wins all four rinks delivering a terrific 67 shot victory (117-50). The rink scores were, Walter McDougall 37 C Watson 13; Mark Bonar 30 JJ Watson 9; Jim Speirs 26 G Martin 12; Ewan Shearer 24 H Delaney 12. Other results; Coatbridge 63 Cumbernauld 89; Fraserburgh 93 Dundee 71. No team has been posted as yet for this weekends visit to Coatbridge.
West Lothian ladies lost 68-51 on their tough visit to East Fine in the East Premier League however their Balbardie counterparts notched up a valuable 65-55 away win over Headwell in Division 1 East. It was a heroic winning performance from the rink of Catherine Lochran, Nan Mitchell, Delia Flannigan and skip Sharon Leitch that tipped the scales with Margo Duff and Kim Ross both suffering minor setbacks. Balbardie entertain Bainfield this weekend while it is an idle one for West Lothian.
West Lothian seniors celebrated a strong away win (74-49) in last weeks visit to Teviotdale in the East B League while Balbardie found it hard going in a 96-40 defeat at East Lothian.