JOHN Sheran’s new-look Peterhead side continued their fine pre-season form with a 2-1 win over Airdrie United, which brought the Scottish Week Challenge Cup back to Balmoor.
Midfielders Jamie Redman and Paul Watson were the heroes for a Blue Toon side who have now won five matches in a row - a stark contrast to the form that saw the side relegated from Division Two last term.
Of course, pre-season counts for little when the competitive action kicks-off on Saturday, but Sheran’s men at least have a spirit and confidence about them ahead of the big kick off.
High-profile summer recruit Rory McAllister forced the first save of this game, seeing his lofted volley from Davie Donald’s cross pushed over by Adam Szpilczynski less than ten minutes in.
Peterhead survived a John Boyle strike which rattled the crossbar, before taking the lead ten minutes before half-time. Bryan Deasley’s corner tempted Szpilczynski from his line, but Redman got there first to head home from eight yards.
And it took only two minutes for the Blue Toon to extend their lead. McAllister was brought down by David Lilley 20 yards out, and Watson stepped up to curl a superb effort off the underside of the bar and into the top corner of the net.
But Airdrie were to pull a goal back before the interval. Sub Frazer Keast swung in a deep cross from the left, and Ryan Donnelly knocked it back across Blue Toon keeper Raymond Jellema for Boyle to turn home from close range.
Deasley came close to restoring Peterhead’s two-goal advantage when he fired in a right-foot volley which looked to be heading for the corner of the net, only for Szpilczynski to push it round the upright.
And Martin Bavidge was even more unlucky. Having done the hard work of rounding the goalkeeper from Watson’s reverse pass, the striker took a shot from a narrowing angle, but could only look on in anguish as it came back off the base of the upright.
There was a scare at the other end as a Keast cross caught Jellema napping, the goalkeeper dropping the ball onto his foot and seeing it spin towards his own goal, only for Callum Macdonald to clear the danger.
That kept the Blue Toon in front, and meant it was captain Macdoanld who would be presented the trophy by Buchan Queen Chelsea Fulton.
PETERHEAD: Jellema, Donald, McBain, Sellars, Macdonald, Redman, Conway, Watson, McAllister, Bavidge, Deasley. Subs: Sharp, D. Ross, Wyness, Ross, Strachan, Davidson, Young, Duffy (gk).