Dalkeith ran out dominant victors after taking the early ascendency in the game, and never relinquishing it. It was a cup final largely characterised by set pieces, the first of which came for Cavalry Park. After an uneventful opening 10 minutes, they won a free-kick after a foul in a promising position, but it was blazed well over the bar by Stuart Mackrell.
This seemed to spark Dalkeith into life, and, a few moments later, they were in. All of a sudden, thanks to a mix-up at the back, Michael Bennet was in on goal and made no mistake, slotting the ball calmly past keeper Scott Capaldi and into the far corner of the net. Dalkeith had the lead, and were determined not to give it up.
Now taking a commanding role in this contest, they went on the attack again, winning the first of their many free-kicks in a dangerous location, out on the Cavalry Park left, just outside the penalty area. Jack Burrows swung the ball into the back post. It looked for an instant as though he had put slightly too much on it, but Taylor Rogan leapt at the back post to send a powerful header into the top right corner, doubling Dalkeith’s advantage. Now with clear water ahead of Cavalry Park, Dalkeith began to relax into the game a little more.
The result was that the tempo slowed considerably, the game becoming a somewhat cagey affair, Dalkeith being content with their lead and Cavalry Park keen not to concede again in case the game got away from them.
Nevertheless, chances still came. Dalkeith won another free-kick, this time in a more central area, and once again Burrows stepped up to take. He shot low and powerful towards the bottom left corner, but Capaldi got down well and turned it round the post for a corner.
Finally, Cavalry Park began to show why they were in this cup final. Reece Wyllie broke free of the attentions of the Dalkeith defence, and went through, only to drag his right-footed shot past the far post.
At the other end, Burrows sent another free-kick whistling just over the bar. Minutes later, the ball broke to Bennet in the box, whose shot was well saved by Capaldi.
From another free-kick, this time for Cavalry Park and from 30 yards away, Mackrell had a shot, which was comfortably saved by Ross Coats in the Dalkeith goal.
From their next free-kick, Cavalry Park tried a slightly different approach. Oguican Yildrim attempted to thread a pass in behind the Dalkeith defence towards Jamie Weir, but just overhit it, allowing Coats to gather. It was interesting idea, and would have worked with slightly better execution.
Before the half came to an end, Dalkeith were on the attack again, but Morgan Rutherford’s shot, after he had beaten two defenders, was easily saved by Capaldi.
The half-time whistle blew, with the scoreline still unchanged to how it had been for much of the half, a comfortable two-goal lead for Dalkeith.