East of Scotland League, Premier Division:

Crossgates Primrose 1 Sauchie Juniors 2

CROSSGATES PRIMROSE'S wait for a home victory goes on after Sauchie edged them out in their East of Scotland League, Premier Division clash on Saturday.

Alan Campbell's men, back in action after their scheduled home game with Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts the previous week fell victim to the weather, have now picked up just one point from five games at Humbug Park after two first-half goals proved decisive for the Clackmannanshire outfit.

Campbell had selected a trialist in goal, with three others on the bench, for this one but his team fell behind after eight minutes before a penalty shortly before the half-hour mark doubled the visitors' advantage.

Jon Tully and Gary Carroll did the damage for Sauchie and, despite their best efforts and another goal for talisman Scott Lawrie, which arrived with two minutes left, it wasn't enough for Crossgates.

Their two victories so far this season have both come on the road, and this result leaves them 14th in the table on 10 points, seven ahead of Inverkeithing, who they host on Sunday in a rearranged fixture.

Lowland League:

Kelty Hearts 2 University of Stirling 0

REIGNING champions Kelty Hearts are top of the Lowland League for Christmas after they made it a magnificent seven successive wins on Saturday.

Barry Ferguson's in-form team saw off University of Stirling at New Central Park to wrap up their third victory in a week and move seven points clear of East Kilbride and Bonnyrigg Rose at the summit.

An opening 45 minutes that their manager described as "excellent" set them on the path to three points, with goals from Nathan Austin and Ryan Shanley putting them in control at the break.

Although Kallum Higginbotham saw a second-half penalty saved, Kelty had done enough and continue their increasing momentum ahead of this Saturday's William Hill Scottish Cup first round tie with Jeanfield Swifts.

The hosts almost made a dream start inside two minutes when Dougie Hill crashed a header off the underside of the crossbar, while Higginbotham soon tested the reflexes of Ben Fry with a stinging half-volley.

Austin was unlucky to see an effort hit the post after beating Fry to the ball at the edge of the box but the opener was merely delayed and last season's leading marksman was on hand to tap his side ahead, capitalising on the loose ball after Fry couldn't hold Michael Tidser's effort.

That was followed just three minutes later, shortly after the half hour, by a second goal when Shanley, on loan from Hibernian, tucked home his second in three matches from six yards.

Just before the hour mark, Higginbotham had the chance to add a third from the spot after Dylan Easton had been felled by Mathew Burrows but Fry stopped his effort.

East of Scotland League, Premier Division:

Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts 1 Jeanfield Swifts 3

JEANFIELD won the battle of the Swifts at Ballast Bank.

But Inverkeithing boss Grant Brough is convinced his team are taking small steps of improvement each week despite a ninth defeat in 10 league games since being promoted last season.

The second-top visitors, who take on Kelty Hearts in the Scottish Cup this weekend, were two goals up at the break thanks to Paul Simpson's angled drive and Chris McLeish's glancing header from a free kick.

Striker Josh Morris fired the hosts back into contention with 20 minutes left with a well-taken penalty but, almost immediately, Mark Smith netted for Jeanfield to seal victory.

Brough believes injuries are not helping their efforts to put points on the board but was pleased with more of the Swifts' youngsters getting an opportunity in his side, with under-20s skipper Liam Jackson playing more than 50 minutes, while 16-year-old Ryan McLean made his first-team debut from the bench.

"I didn't think there was much between the sides to be honest," Brough commented.

"It's the same as always. Every single week, we see a little bit of improvement and the boys are trying to take on board what we're trying to do with them, so little by little, you can see us improving.

"You can see the mistakes slowly getting cut out with our play so, from that side of things, it's pleasing. But you're playing against good sides every week so it's not easy.

"It doesn't help with the injuries we've got. We get a few back, then a few get injured – I've never known a year like it. It's hard to get a wee bit of consistency.

"On Saturday, we had a 16-year-old who came off the bench, so from that point of view it's great to see. It's not a 16-year-old playing out of necessity – he got in on merit.

It's just keeping a wee bit of reality about where we've come from and what we're trying to achieve."

Saturday's fixture: Scottish Cup, first round – Kelty Hearts v Jeanfield Swifts (3pm). Sunday's fixture: East of Scotland League, Premier Division – Crossgates Primrose v Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts (1.30pm).