YOKER ATHLETIC kicked off their competitive season with a 2-0 win against Ashfield on Saturday at Holm Park in the Sectional League Cup.

Rab O’Neill and Greg Cree made their debuts while Stewart Sharkey returned at full-back having departed Holm Park for Annan Athletic in the summer of 2016.

James Ross and Scott Smith both missed out through injury.

In a rather drab first half, chances were at a premium with Chris Moulangou going close for the visitors early in the game.

The hosts’ solitary opportunity in the first half came via Greg Maitland, whose effort from outside the box was as close as Yoker came to threatening Ashfield.

The visitors should have gone into the interval in front, but striker Paddy Cullen fluffed his lines when clean through on Marc Wilson in the home goal.

Athletic came out far sharper in the second half, and began to impose themselves on the game.

O’Neill’s 25 yard free-kick went close then Ryan Hynes saw an effort blocked by Passmore.

Strikers Shaun Wallace and Stevie Young were introduced as Yoker sought to convert their superiority into goals.

Wallace was first to threaten, with Ashfield goalkeeper Quinn forced to make an excellent stop in the away goal.

And Young was to play a part in the opener, his excellent hold-up play set-up Maitland who smashed home from 20 yards to open the scoring after 63 minutes.

The home side were now on the front foot and chasing more goals whilst the defensive pairing of O’Neill and Allan looked formidable.

The Whe-Ho sealed the three points with just four minutes remaining, Jordan McBride squaring for Young to tap home from close distance.

Yoker now face two away trips to Glasgow Perthshire tonight [Wednesday] and Maryhill on Saturday as they look to continue to build in preparation for the league campaign beginning.

YOKER ATHLETIC: Wilson, A.Campbell (Young), Sharkey, Henry, O’Neill, Allan, Rankin (McBride), Bissland, Hynes (Wallace), Cree, Maitland. Subs not used: L.Campbell (GK), Carson.

Primext Ltd Man of the Match: Kerr Allan.