A Fraser Keast hat-trick for Bo’ness United helped put Bellshill to the sword in Saturday’s 6-1 Scottish Junior Cup win for the East giants.
Bo’ness went ahead after six minutes of this first round replay clash when Roddy MacLennan did well on the wing before coming inside and curling a 20-yard effort into the top corner.
The lead was short-lived however as Bellshill levelled with a penalty. Stewart Devine brought down Richard Kane and up stepped Chris McCormack to score.
Bellshill were then reduced to 10 men on 18 minutes by referee Stephen Graham who decided Michael Brunton’s late challenge on Michael Gemmell was worthy of a red card.
United began to make their man advantage count with Ruari MacLennan, Wright and Keast all going close.
The visitors went back in front on the half hour when a Gemmell shot was turned into the net by Keast.
Moments later a move started in their own box saw Roddy MacLennan crossing for Wright to head in the third.
Just before the interval Bellshill got a penalty for a foul on Davie Dodds that the assistant seemed to give and from the resultant spot kick McCormack saw his effort brilliantly saved by debutant Chic Clark.
Any hopes of a Bellshill comeback were quickly ended when Keast netted from close range after Devine had seen his goalbound header stopped by a handball.
The fifth goal came on 49 minutes with Keast getting his hat-trick after getting on the end of a Wright cross.
Bellshill were then reduced to nine men for another late tackle on Gemmell, this time from Michael Smith.
Bo’ness, with the numerical advantage, were able to control the game.
But Bellshill kept working hard and Yousef Bamba nearly pulled one back after some neat footwork in the box.
Bo’ness looked like they could score more and only good goalkeeping from Garry Keenan prevented Fraser Eddington and Wright netting. But Ross Philp added a sixth goal on 72 minutes with another good finish after Keenan had again saved well from Eddington.
United could have added more in the latter stages but they will be happy with an improved performance and a place in the next round.
Bellshill acquitted themselves well despite the result and they return to league duty at home to Forth this Saturday, kick-off 2pm.