Ross Gray had a hand in both Berwick goals but the hardworking winger was overshadowed by Livingston striker Rob Ogleby who scored all four of his team’s goals.
Euan Bauld was a surprise inclusion in the home line up after being carried off against Raith the previous week but he and his co-defenders dealt admirably with Livi’s early attacks.
Rangers seemed to think that long shots were most likely to pay dividends with David Gold, Colin Cameron and Matthieu Judor all trying them before, as the half hour approached, Ogleby rewarded Michael McKenna for his pass by scoring the opening goal. The ex-Hearts and Wrexham man struck again a minute later. Boosted by the opener, Livi stormed down the right and the English-born number nine was on hand to double the margin.
A quickly taken free kick by Dean Hoskins found Gray who, at the second attempt, got past his marker to send the ball into the penalty area. Stephen Scott’s short pass sent it back the same way but only as far as Calum Helm who beat keeper Kevin Walker from ten yards.
Livingston almost made it 3-1 before the break. With the ball perilously close to Berwick’s goal and goalie Michael Andrews exposed, Gavin Stevenson struggled to get it away, Bauld coming to their rescue.
The second half began with Gray and Stephen Scott exchanging wings. It was only four minutes old before it was 3-1, Ogleby completing his hat trick, Jack Beaumont the creator after being spotted out in the open by McKenna.
Livi, for whom 15 year old Levi Kinchant was on from the start, now felt confident enough to bring on two more young ones in a double substitution. Such confidence seemed justified when, in the 74th minute, Andrews allowed the ball to bounce over his head following a long punt by opposite number Walker and, inevitably, Ogleby was the man who made it 4-1.
Just three minutes later, Cameron scored Berwick’s second goal after Gray did the preparatory work out wide. Rangers didn’t view it as a consolation and worked hard to try to score again. In fact, credit to both sides for maintaining the pace to the end, though on a very cold night, it was probably the best policy anyway!
Berwick Rangers: Andrews, Bauld, Watson, Cameron, Stevenson*, Hoskins ( capt. ), Gray, Judor ( Khouiel 57 ), Helm*, Gold, S.Scott* ( K.Scott* 57 )
Match report provided by Berwick Rangers Supporters Trust.