The Thornton Hibs’ supporters, players and officials won’t forget this day for a long time as they recorded one of their best ever results in the Scottish Junior Cup.
It was a thoroughly deserved 3-1 victory against one of the top clubs in the West Region and sealed their place in the fourth round.
The Hibs had early chances to take the lead with Ben Anthony and Garry Thomson coming close.
At the other end, Ryan Linton made a great save to deny Scott Walker and then Willie Sawyers watched in anguish as he shot wide from close range. In the 39th minute, Linton made a brilliant double save from Sawyers and Connor Hughes to keep his goal intact.
This was to prove crucial because on the stroke of half-time Thomson headed the Hibs in front after getting on the end of Daniel McNab’s cross.
Kirkintilloch began the second half in determined fashion and Sawyers will surely feel that he ought to have scored from John Kelly’s cross instead of knocking the ball wide.
Thornton’s second goal came in the 50th minute when just seconds after Linton had safely gathered the ball following a Rob Roy corner, it was swiftly switched upfield to Thomson; he could’ve shot first time but instead cut inside before coolly shooting beyond Hutchison.
Thomson came close to hitting a third from a free-kick but Hutchison was equal to the task making a fine save to push the ball wide of goal. The third goal came in the 82nd minute with Thomson playing a big part as it was his shot that struck the post and, when the ball rebounded into the path of Anthony, he had the simplest of tasks to guide the ball into the unguarded net.
Sawyers shot low into the net four minutes later but this was just a consolation for the home side.
Thornton Hibs: Linton, Robertson, McMillan, S.Drummond, Hepburn, Orrock, Keatings, Coleman, Anthony, Thomson, McNab. Subs: A.Drummond, Adam, Shields, Millar.