RHU Amateurs secured their place in the next round of the West of Scotland Cup on Saturday after a dramatic – and often heated – victory away to West Kilbride.

With the teams tied at 3-3 after a tempestuous 90 minutes in which the hosts were reduced to nine men with more than three quarters of the game to play, Rhu kept their heads in the ensuing penalty shoot-out, with Ali Maule slotting the crucial spot-kick to earn the visitors a third round tie away to Glasgow University.

Rhu have had more than their fair share of away matches in both league and cup of late – and perhaps the travelling took its toll on the local side as West Kilbride captain Stevie Moran headed home the opening goal in the very first minute.

But Rhu hit back after the first of the hosts’ two red cards – David Wentworth was sent off after over-running the ball and lunging in to try to rescue it, and Brian Cameron curled the resulting free kick into the bottom corner from 30 yards out.

READ MORE: Rhu have THREE goals disallowed in draw with FC Dal Riata

Tempers flared again in an off-the-ball incident in which Rhu’s Callum Smith was head-butted and Stevie Greenlees was shown the home side’s second red card.

The small pitch meant the two-man difference between the sides didn’t show as much as might be expected – and West Kilbride underlined their threat when they regained the lead from a breakaway just after half-time.

But Rhu kept plugging away, and equalised for a second time after great work down the left by Smith, whose cross was converted by Cameron at the near post.

And the visitors looked set fair for the win when Smith added yet another goal to his tally, which now stands at more than 20 for a season which isn’t yet three months old.

But the home side weren’t done – and with Rhu looking to close the game out, the referee awarded a dubious spot-kick to the hosts, which David Mills converted to take the tie to penalties.

READ MORE: Rhu see off Callander Thistle after 10-goal thriller

Cameron, Douglas Black, Mark Toms and Smith converted Rhu’s first four attempts, and West Kilbride found the net with their first three – but the hosts’ fourth effort cannoned back off the bar, leaving Maule to slot coolly home for a 5-3 shoot-out success.

Rhu squad: Brown, Milne, Fagan, Black, Stillwell, Cameron, Bell, Toms, Maule, McKell, Smith, Bell and Brodie.

This Saturday, October 26, Rhu are on the road again, this time to Lanarkshire for a League Cup tie away to Wishaw Wycombe Wanderers.

* * * * * * * * * * *

Meanwhile, Helensburgh FC were left kicking their heels on Saturday after heavy rain forced the postponement of their local derby against St Patrick’s FP in Dumbarton in the Greater Glasgow Premier AFL.

This Saturday, Helensburgh take on Cambria at Hermitage Academy. Kick-off is at 2pm.

READ MORE: Check out all the latest Helensburgh and Lomond football news here