Hearts B and East Stirlngshire played out an entertaining 1-1 draw at the Falkirk Stadium on Friday night.
Callum Sandilands had Hearts ahead early on, but Scott Honeyman restored parity before a scoreless second half.
After three weeks without a competitive match, the Wee Jambos returned to Lowland League action with Liam Fox making two changes from the side that defeated Broomhill three weeks ago. Macaulay Tait and Makenzie Kirk dropped out and were replaced by Harry Gordon and Murray Thomas.
The Wee Jambos have been scoring goals for fun this season and they picked up where they left off, with the opening goal inside six minutes.
Thomas, often seen on the right flank, was this time on the opposite side, and he cut infield before floating an inviting cross to the back post where Sandilands was waiting to tap home unmarked.
The men in maroon defeated Shire 2-0 last season at the Falkirk Stadium and they almost doubled their lead just a minute later.
The Wee Jambos broke forward at speed and the ball found its way to Ryan Duncan, who steadied himself and although his effort found a way past Neil Mitchell in the Shire goal, covering defender Ynyr Liddell was on hand to clear the ball off the line.
Hearts had been well on top in the early exchanges, but the home side almost levelled the scores with their first real opportunity of the night after 25 minutes. The men in maroon didn’t clear their lines from a corner and Jamie Penker rattled the crossbar after letting fly from the edge of the box.
After a bright start from the men in maroon, the hosts were coming into the contest and they found a leveller, five minutes before the break. Scott Honeyman was played through on the right-hand side of the box and he finished smartly past Liam McFarlane.
Half-time: East Stirlingshire 1-1 Hearts
Into the second half and both teams continued to flood forward in numbers. Shire had the first chance after the interval and Liam McFarlane was again on hand to deny Penker.
Up the other end, Adam Forrester made good ground down the right and his cross to the back post was headed wide by Mackenzie Ross.
James Wilson was next to go close for Hearts and he forced Mitchell into a good save before the hour mark, after beating the offside trap.
Throughout the second half, it never felt like a game that would end all square, but neither side were able to take a chance that came their way and had to settle for a point apiece.
East Stirlingshire: Mitchell, Coutts, Liddell, Young, Pyper ©, Hynd, Honeyman, McGill, Rankin, Penker, Brown,
Subs: Flynn, Fotheringham, Thompson, McLean, Ronald, McAlpine, MacDonald
Hearts: McFarlane, Dall (Drysdale, 46), Wilson, Sandilands, Thomas (McLuckie, 65), Gordon (Gillies, 56), Nair, Forrester, Duncan, Rathie, Ross (Stevenson, 83)
Subs: McConnell, McLuckie, Stevenson, Drysdale, Smutek, Chisholm, Gillies