Braves completed the league double over Hearts B with a convincing 5-2 victory at a wet and windy Ferguson Park.
This win was another showcase of Braves' ruthlessness in front of goal, with strikes from Luke Main, John Guthrie, Zac Butterworth and Jamie Watson easing us to a comfortable success in the end.
In difficult conditions Braves started the brighter pushing Hearts into their defensive third and got a deserved opener through Main. The ball broke to the midfielder favourably at the edge of the box following a corner and he lashed into the bottom left corner without hesitation to mark his 11th of a profitable campaign.
The second came soon after as the Jambos were caught cold. Good work down the right from the industrious Liam Craig saw his enticing cross diverted past the helpless McFarlane in the Hearts goal and Hearts already had a mountain to climb.
This metaphorical mountain grew steeper just a few minutes later as John Guthrie added a third with a stunning shot. The midfielder's first of the season but you would wonder why on evidence of this goal as his angled shot into the top left hand corner left the Jambos keeper rooted to the spot.
Both sides exchanged chances before the break but the deficit remained at three as we reached the halfway mark. This gave the hosts a chance to regroup and they made a flying start to the 2nd half as Bobby McLuckie rounded Chris Henry after a clever knockdown and made no mistake with the finish into the unguarded net.
This gave the home side impetus and they looked the more likely to grab the next goal until Zac Butterworth stepped in with a moment of brilliance. As we have been accustomed to this season the flying winger left the Hearts right back in his wake as he burst down the left, and the finish was cool as he slotted underneath McFarlane to restore the three goal advantage.
The Jambos would not lie down however and responded instantly on 71 mins as Hambrook tapped into an empty net after Chris Henry could only palm a powerful header into his path.
Braves killed the game once and for all soon after though as a lovely team move involving Jamie Walker resulted in Jamie Watson nodding into the bottom corner to make it five for the rampant away side.
Those who have watched Braves in action this season will be well aware of the free-scoring nature of this Braves side. We have only failed to score in one league game thus far and this thrashing of Hearts took the team to 70 goals in the Lowland League for the campaign, a seriously impressive figure at this stage of the season. The spread of goals is also something Ricky Waddell will surely take great satisfaction in with Kelly, Main, McNeil and Butterworth all into double figures for the season.
Man of the Match- Luke Main
The combative midfielder is crucial to Braves in both boxes and he exemplified this with another display full of energy, powerful running and committed defensive work. He also got us on our way with the vital opener, his 2nd in two games against the Wee Jambos this season.
State of Play
This comprehensive win moved Braves onto 39 points and above Hearts into 10th position. Next up we host Cumbernauld Colts at Alliance Park on Saturday (KO 15:00pm), a fixture where Braves will be seeking revenge following 4-1 reverse at Broadwood in early November.