With a new management team in place, Coldstream eased through to the quarter-finals of the King Cup with a comfortable victory over local rivals Kelso United.
Allan Wilson and Phil Johnson took charge of the Coldstream team following Stephen Gibbard’s departure two days earlier.
Luke Strangeways scored a first-half penatly, and second-half strikes from Jack Hay and Kieran Ainslie sealed a comfortable victory in windy conditions.
The Streamers went into the game in testing circumstances following Gibbards’s departure as manager by mutual consent two days earlier. Key men Michael Allan and Josh Hebdon were also missing through suspension.
Rudy McLeod, Regan Graham and Jake Rutherford were all handed starts, with Axel Cassard and John Crawford dropping to the bench. Jack Hay also returned to the squad.
A strong wind sweeping across Woodside People made it difficult for both teams. But Coldstream made a bright start and monopolised possession in the first half without creating too many clear-cut chances.
Kris O’Neil had a powerful free-kick well saved by Kelso goalkeeper William Stewart. But the opening goal arrived when Strangeways was brought down by Stewart in the box. The frontman from Wooler smashed the resultant penalty high into the net.
Coldstream were fortunate not to give away a penalty at the other end, a Kelso forward doing well to stay on his feet following Kieran Ainslie’s risky sliding challenge.
Other than that, however, Kelso rarely threatened and Coldstream deserved their 1-0 half-time lead.
But it was a double substitution on the hour which proved to be the decisive moment of the match. Just 30 seconds after coming on up front John Crawford and Jack Hay combined to score Coldstream’s second.
From a long ball upfield, Crawford won the header and flicked into Hay’s path. He quickly cut in onto his left foot before firing high past Stewart from 16 yards.
Crawford claimed his second assist when his header from a corner hit the inside of the post and was stabbed home from two yards by Ainslie for his first goal of the season.
Kelso missed a golden chance to pull one back five minutes from time following a rare defensive slip from Valentine Marc, but from six yards out the first-time shot went wide of target.
It would have been little more than a consolation.
Coldstream: Walters, McLeod, Graham, Marc, Ainslie, Tweddle, Gauthier, Neill, Strangeways (Cassard 73), O’Neill (Hay 60), Rutherford (Crawford 60). Subs not used: Oliver, Clowes.