Coldstream 6, Peebles Rovers 0
Coldstream took advantage of a slip up from Gala Fairydean by demolishing bottom club Peebles Rovers to move two points clear at the top.
Gary Wales began the onslaught with a goal after just 14 seconds before going on to complete a double. John Crawford also weighed in with two, while Josh Hebdon and Stuart Coyle completed the rout.
Still without Kieran Ainslie, Richard Baxendale, Michael Allan and Greg McCrudden, manager Andrew Gibson suffered further injury blows going into this fixture when brothers Daniel Cornish and Martyn Cornish were ruled out.
But Lee Lambert returned to the side after recovering from a neck injury, and there were places on the bench for long term absentees Jonny Simpson and Craig Heugh as well as Saddler, who signed last week after moving to the area from Fife.
The Streamers were in the ascendancy from the off and with Peebles having kick off it was quite unbelievable that 14 seconds later the ball was in their own net. Great work by Kris O’Neil down the left resulted in his lobbed effort coming back off the crossbar to the feet of Wales, who slotted home for one of the quickest ever goals in Home Park history.
Josh Hebdon then added a second after a lofted Lambert set piece into the box was headed goalwards by the Peebles centre half, the little midfielder sliding in to ensure the ball made it over the line.
To their credit, Peebles did play some nice football at times and looked threatening on the break despite their lowly present league position. They went close with a header, Mark Walters punching away to safety before two long distance efforts whistled over the bar.
The pressure was short-lived, however with O’Neil playing a perfectly weighted pass for the forward-running Wales, who fired home from the edge of the box.
Just before the break Crawford added a fourth, latching onto a header from strike partner O’Neil to slot home under the onrushing keeper from a tight angle. He could have had a hat-trick, but his acrobatic scissor kick sailed just over despite the good connection.
After the interval, Peebles again played some neat football and were looking like they might bag themselves a consolation goal.
Gibson’s men had other ideas, however, and good play from the impressive Wales down the right saw prolific striker Crawford head home for his second of the game.
Unfortunately, despite his best efforts, a third hat-trick in as many matches evaded the big target man and it was left to substitute Coyle to complete the rout. The tall forward came off the bench to cut in on his favoured left foot to smash one into the back of the net from 20 yards.
With the injury list now starting to get shorter by the week, Gibson will have a stronger squad to choose from in the weeks ahead. With no game scheduled for this weekend, the Streamers have arranged a friendly against Stobswood Welfare instead.
Coldstream must now wait until December 1 for their next league encounter which is a trip to Yarrow Park to face Selkirk.
Coldstream: M Walters, J McLeod, L Cannon, J Ainslie, M Simpson, L Lambert, J Hebdon, G Wales, S Simpson, K O’Neil, J Crawford. Subs: J Simpson, C Heugh, S Coyle, Saddler.