At the eighth attempt across four different venues, Whitehill and Duns finally got their South Challenge Cup second-round tie played at Netherdale on Saturday.
In a closely fought match battling Duns took their Lowland League opponents to extra time before eventually succumbing to a goal from Whitehill’s Greg Kerr, a recent loan signing from St Johnstone, just seven minutes from time.
The Dingers got off to a bad start when, after just 15 minutes, Whitehill’s Calum Connelly let loose a cracking shot from 15 yards which flew high into the net beyond keeper Robertson.
At the other end Jake Rutherford was fouled but the free kick produced nothing favourable for Duns.
With 35 minutes gone manager Carl Hudson made his first change, bringing on Kieran Bullen for Steven McHoul. What happened next comes under the ‘inspired substitution’ heading.
A superp cross was met by Bullen who scored his first goal for the club with a great header to level the tie!
With half time looming Whitehill turned up the pressure forcing a succession of corners then a free kick but the Duns defence stood firm.
With seven second half minutes on the clock Duns had the ball in the net after a good old goalmouth stramash but unfortunately the referee chalked it of. At the other end a Duns defender fouled a Welfare forward in the boc vut after a few seconds of deliberation the referee waved play on.
For the remainder of the second half play swung from end to end but there were no more goals and the game went into extra time.
Whitehill went closest in the first half but Duns keeper Sean Robertson saved well at full stretch.
The second 15 minutes started with Whitehill keeping up their pressure from the first haldf by forcing two corners in a row but they came to nothing. However, in the next attack, mideway through the final period of extra time, Duns hearts were broken when Kerr fired a hard low shot past Robertson.
To their complete credit the Duns players did not let their heads go down and battled right to the end.
Another really gutsy performance by Carl Hudson’s men against a very competent Lowland League side sitting 23 places higher in the pyramid.
Duns: Robertson, Weatherburn, Walker, McHoul (Bullen 35), Windram, D. Brydon, Chisholm, Rutherford, Lauder (Pattenden 71), Robinson, Strangeways (J. Brydon 55).