Goals from Fife’s Skipper Harris Kay, Matthew Todd and Hamish Milne saw maximum points go to the visitors in the SSFA National Trophy group B tie. Powered on by an influential performance by Matthew Todd, Fife picked up their second win out of as many games in Group B.
Independent began this tie the brighter of the two sides and for the opening 5 minutes had Fife camped inside their own half. This early pressure was almost rewarded when Sam Walker’s delivery from the corner flag was met at the front post by Chris Stafford but a last-ditch block from Harris Kay ensured the score remained 0-0. After riding the storm of the opening few minutes, the Fife midfield began to make their presence felt with Matthew Todd helping link midfield and attack. Fife continued to pile on the pressure with Ryan Connelly looking lively up front, winning his side their first corner of the game after 11 minutes. Todd swung the ball into the box and it was met by the head of Captain Harris Kay to give the Fife side a 1-0 lead.
Fife came close to doubling their lead when Ross Cuthbert dispossessed Max Bendle inside the Independent box but Scott Robeson was out quickly to produce a smart save.
Independent began to battle back and after 17 minutes Sam Walker was brought down at the edge of the box following some good passing and footwork. But, Walker’s shot from the free kick was saved comfortably by Craig Richardson in the Fife net.
Independent continued to drive forward in search of an equaliser and following some close control Cameron Dow worked himself some space at the edge of the area and produced a great driven effort matched by a smart save from Richardson, but he could only parry the ball into the path of Sam Walker who was already beginning to wheel away in celebration as he watched Richardson come out of nowhere to produce a phenomenal diving save to keep his team in front.
After 30 minutes, Fife appeared to be winning the midfield battle and following some more quick passing Lewis Crosbie slipped in Connelly who done well to beat his man but his low shot across goal failed to trouble Robeson.
Crosbie was once again in amongst the action when he was taken out by Chris Mullen near the side line following some good footwork. The resulting free-kick was played deep into the box by Matthew Todd and the ball was met by the high-rising Ross Cuthbert who could only direct his header over the bar.
As the first half drew to a close, Fife had one more chance to extend their lead as Todd’s shot for outside the box was deflected into the path of Lewis Crosbie whose low effort from 8 yards drifted inches past the post.