The road to Tynecastle came to an end as Spartans and Hutchison Vale did battle to determine the winner of the Willie Bauld Cup Final, with both sides in good form and not a huge amount to split between them.
Spartans, who beat Tynecastle 3-1 in the previous round, controlled the majority of possession early on, with Keir Russell dragging an early free-kick wide after four minutes.
In the early stages it became evident that Hutchie had pace and energy in abudance upfront, and they displayed that with seven minutes on the clock as Rory Hamilton raced through and won a corner for his side, but Kieran Moyles was there to clear it away.
Only three minutes later their counter-attacking style led to the opening goal, once again it was Rory Hamilton who was in the centre of the action as Reuben Walsh floated an inch-perfect ball over the back-line, and Hamilton took the shot well on the half-volley, striking the ball into the far corner and over the goalkeeper.
Five minutes later Russell attempted to put his team level with another dig from distance, but he dragged the shot wide of the post. Hutchie countered down at the other end, as Brandon Hunter broke away from his man and worked it to Hamilton for his second, but this time he could only hit his powerful effort over the bar for a goal-kick.
On 19 minutes there was a second goal and it levelled the scoreline. If the opening goal was a brilliant piece of build up and a clinical finish, the equaliser was as simple as it gets; Russell wouldn’t have expected his inswinging corner to find the back of the net, but exactly that happened as his delivery soared over the heads of everybody, including the goalkeeper, and into the top corner. The most unlikely of ways to get his side back into this final.
Hutchie persisted with their counter-attacking style and it nearly paid dividends when Cameron Fraser found himself through on goal, but Harry Stone was quick off his line to smother the resulting shot and keep it at 1-1.
The half ended on a quiet note after the earlier barrel of chances, with Reece Mason having the only real chance for Spartans before half-time, as he controlled a cross on his chance, turned well and got his shot away, but could only hit it into the midriff of goalkeeper Dean Beveridge.