Rob Roy showed their
battling qualities to come back twice from a goal down to win through to a Scottish Junior Final quarter-final.
In an astonishing opening 15 minutes four goals were scored.
Playing in front of Penicuik’s largest crowd of the season, Rabs had the first chance of the match with Chris Duff heading a Lee Gallacher corner kick wide.
Athletic took a seventh minute lead when Ryan McCallum met a Neil Janczyk corner kick to send a left foot volley sailing over Rabs keeper Jordan Brown.
However the home side’s lead lasted only three minutes when a Duff cross into the box was only partially cleared by Darrel Young it fell into the path of Gallacher who took time to control the ball before sending a right foot effort past home keeper Billy Bald.
A minute later the East Region side regained the lead, with the Rabs defence switched off, Keith Lough picked up a McCallum pass before firing a terrific volley high past Brown.
Rabs equalised from the penalty spot in the 15th minute when Willie Sawyers was clumsily tripped in the box by Andy Forbes, Referee Brown had no hesitation in pointing to the spot, Kevin Green stepped up to net the award to make it 2-2.
Spurred on by a good sized following, Rabs were now in control, Sawyers net bound shot was blocked by Craig Hume for a corner then Shaun Fraser headed a Duff cross over the bar.
On a difficult playing surface both sides were struggling to make accurate passing moves.
It was a determined Rabs side who came out for the second half and it took them only six minutes to take the lead for the first time when some neat football gave skipper Gary McMenamin the chance to send a well-placed low shot into the corner of the net from just outside the penalty box.
Athletic were reduced to 10 men when Young who had been earlier booked was sent off for a dangerous lunging tackle.
As Rabs surged forward for their fourth goal Bald made a fine stop from Sawers before the ball was scrambled for a corner.
A minute later the keeper was again in action making another save from Sayers.
The home side drew themselves level in the 64th minute when Lewis Barr crossed for substitute Ryan Gay to slot home.
Three minutes later Rabs made it 4-3 when Penicuik failed to clear properly in their penalty box the ball broke to Scott Walker in the crowded penalty area and he wasted no time in smacking the ball into the net.
Sawyers had the ball in the net minutes later but the offside flag had been raised.
In a late spirited spell from the home side McCallum headed the ball wide before Barr skied his effort over the crossbar as time ran out for them and it was the Kirkintilloch side who now look forward to a quarter-final draw.
Rob Roy: Brown, Walker, MacKenzie, Green, Buchanan, Whelan, Gallacher, McMenamin (c), Sawyers, Fraser, Duff Subs: Mackie, McKinven (GK), Watt, Barr, Pearson.