- Published: Monday, 10 March 2014 21:10
- Written by SHFLtv
Nairn County scorer Martin Macdonald admitted it has been a change of position for him recently. After previously playing at right back he was moved into a three man defence and he was pleased to contribute at both ends after his side secured their second clean sheet in succession after failing to keep a clean sheet for six previous games.
“I don’t mind going back in at centre half as long as I’m playing well and we keep winning. Centre half is my normal position. We had Michael Morrison suspended against Huntly and we’ve not got the biggest of squads and we had good enough players to come in to the midfield with Adam Naismith moving back to sweeper and we’re happy to take a one-nil win. Having Adam in beside myself and Sean helped as he’s a player who can play anywhere across defence and midfield"
After netting two goals in the North of Scotland Cup earlier in the season he was delighted to net his first league goal of the current campaign.
“I went to the back post and expected the ball to go deep then I spotted a bit of space at the front post and I ran forward and Robbie’s cross landed nicely in front of me to tuck it away and it’s about time I scored as I’ve not scored in the league since we beat Formartine back in May."
After being on the losing side twice to their opponents last season the 34 year old was pleased to see his team come out on top this time around after conceding six goals over two games to the Strathbogie side last term.
“Huntly always give us a tough game whether it’s at Station Park or Christie Park. They took six points from us last season and this season we’ve been able to do the same to them. Marek Mádle was a tough player to play against as he could be physical at times but as a team they worked hard and gave us a tough game.
Right now we’re still in second place with Brora having games in hand and everyone can take points off each other in this league and we saw that today with Formartine dropping two points at Buckie but we need to keep winning and worry about ourselves”
With Craig Dorrat and Michael Clark both suspended and Michael Hart and Alexander Thoirs both unavailable it was a change in the Huntly backline once again. winger Neale Davidson was deployed in a deeper role at left back and the 22 year old was one of the top performers for his side and he admitted with the chances both side had the game could’ve went either way.
“I thought it was a good game of football and they scored at a crucial point in the game just like they did when they beat us the first time round this season. The first half saw both teams going at it. Bowman had a good save from Alan Pollock to keep them out and Sam McKenzie had one off the line at the other end. That’s the last three games now we’ve lost by one goal margins and we’re a bit disappointed and it does hurt as nobody in this squad likes losing. The decision which led to their goal we didn’t feel was the right one. Leigh said himself he never touched the ball and I think you can see my Conor Gethins’ reaction he knew that but things like that happen and it was disappointing to lose the winner off the back of that.”
Having been ever present in the side for the last three seasons now, Davidson admits there’s been a good reaction from his side following the appointment of Gregg Carrol as Manager.
“Everyone always wants to impress when a new Manager comes in and we all know it’s going to be a big change as Dave McGinlay was at the club for a long time over two spells but we know we’ll have to continue working hard to pick up results before now and the end of the season.
It’s hard for the new management team to plan a team at present with suspensions and injuries, it’s not just the back four which is changing we’ve also had to alter the midfield with Russell Guild and David Booth injured and hopefully between now and the end of the season suspensions will stop and everyone can get fit as we’ve got a lot of tough games coming up.”
Brora Rangers picked up another three points on their surge towards the title, defeating Turriff United 2-0 at Dudgeon Park. First-half goals from Ross Tokely and Steven Mackay were the difference between the sides.
The Cattachs move two points further clear of Formartine United, who drew 0-0 against Buckie Thistle at Victoria Park. United missed the chance to take the points when Stuart Anderson's spot-kick was saved by Kevin Main. However, Nairn County remain four points behind Davie Kirkwood's side after a 1-0 win against Huntly, with Martin MacDonald's goal coming early on in the second-half.
Strathspey Thistle battled back from 2-0 down to earn a point away to Lossiemouth. The Coasters had raced ahead thanks to goals from Jordan McBain and Liam Archibald, however a Jamie McKinnon own goal took the Jags back into it before John Ross equalised with just over ten minutes left.
A fiery game at Allan Park saw both Cove and Deveronvale finish with nine men, with a 1-1 draw the end result after Jamie Lennox's opener was cancelled out with Ricky Wardrop. It was also 1-1 in Wick, where Clachnacuddin took the lead thanks to Gordon Morrison's penalty, only to be cancelled out immediately by a fantastic strike from Richard Macadie.
Meanwhile, a hat-trick from PA Bruce helped Fraserburgh come back from behind to defeat Rothes 4-1. The match between Forres Mechanics and Inverurie Locos was abandoned after 30 minutes of play, due to high winds severely affecting the direction and flight of the ball.
Full summaries are below, with reports to follow on http://www.hflhub.com later this evening.
Brora Rangers picked up another excellent three points on the road to maintain their lead at the top of the Highland League, defeating Buckie 5-0 at Station Park. Steven Ross was on target twice, while Zander Sutherland netted against his former club in an impressive rout.
However, second-placed Nairn County remain four points behind the Cattachs, after a hard-fought 1-0 win over Deveronvale in which they played much of the game with ten men. Conor Gethins' penalty turned out to be the winner, despite Michael Morrison seeing red in the first-half, but County held on to claim their second win in Aberdeenshire in five days.
Champions Cove Rangers were the big scorers of the night, defeating Keith 7-1 at Allan Park. Jamie Lennox and Stuart Walker were on target against their former club, while Chris Clark also netted his first for Kevin Tindal's side.
Two sublime efforts by Neil McLean earned Inverurie Locos a 2-1 win against Fraserburgh, meanwhile Formartine United were 3-0 winners over Turriff United in Pitmedden.
Full reports will be online later this evening.
FORT WILLIAM v KEITH Match Postponed.
Today's game at Claggan Park has been called off due to a waterlogged pitch.
Clachnacuddin ran out 4-0 winners against ten-man Fort William in tonight's match at Grant Street Park.
The Lilywhites took an early lead through Martin Laing, before missing several chances to add to their first-half lead. Just when it looked like Clach would go in 1-0 ahead at the break, quickfire goals from Martin Callum and Paul Brindle put them 3-0 to the good just before half-time.
Fort midfielder Keith Millar was dismissed for a second booking, with Struan Woodhouse adding a fourth goal with just minutes of the match remaining.
Match report will be online shortly.
Following some cup action last weekend, we reutrn to a full card of league fixtures this Saturday with the addition of midweek games producing matches thick and fast ahead of the run-in.
We now preview the action around the grounds, with live coverage of all games tomorrow as always here on http://www.hflhub.com.
Press and Journal SHFL
Saturday 8th March 2014
Brora Rangers v Turriff United
Leaders Brora are without injured duo Ally Ridgers and Richie Hart, for the visit of a Turriff side who have struggled in recent weeks, with their last win coming on 1st February.
United make the trip north without Darren Mackie, Andy MacAskill and Chris Herd.
Buckie Thistle v Formartine United
Buckie will aim to bounce back from a 5-0 defeat at home to Brora in midweek, however the Jags have Chris Hegarty and Neil Davidson suspended, while Robert Duncan, Donnie Munro and Liam Baxter also miss out.
Formartine have Hamish Munro suspended, while Stuart Smith and Ross Campbell are doubtful after sustaining knocks against Turriff in midweek.
Cove Rangers v Deveronvale
Cove have signed former Huntly goalkeeper Shaun Barney until the end of the season, and he goes straight into the squad to replace Greg Sim who has been released. Ryan Stott returns, however Stirling Smith will be assessed in a fitness test.
Vale welcome back keeper Darren McConnachie, however Scott Fraser, John Urquhart and Kevin Adams are missing, with new signing Zander Jack set for a fitness test.
Forres Mechanics v Inverurie Locos
Forres have a fully fit squad for the visit of Inverurie, with striker Andy Fraser ready to play again after a long spell out with a knee injury.
Locos also have a full squad to choose from, and will aim to build upon three successive victories.
Fort William v Keith
Fort have Keith Millar suspended, while Danny MacKintosh is injured. However, manager Danny Conlon welcomes back Darren Buchan and goalkeeper Robin Harvey.
Keith travel to Lochaber with a severely depleted squad, with manager Graham McBeath missing eleven players through a combination of work, holidays, injury and suspension.
Fraserburgh v Rothes
Rothes travel to face Fraserburgh at the Bellslea with just Liam Forbes unavailable, following his dismissal against Buckie last weekend.
Lossiemouth v Strathspey Thistle
A Lossie win would put them eleven clear of the Jags, who could draw level with Rothes if they can claim the three points. The Coasters are without suspended duo Chris Ross and Grant Mitchell, while Strikers Matteusz Bobrowksi and Gary Kerr return for Thistle who are without the suspended Terry Swinton.
Nairn County v Huntly
Nairn return to home duty having won two away games in a week, and aim to make it a hat-trick against the Black and Golds. Defender Michael Morrison is suspended, while Gregg Carroll's Huntly have Craig Dorrat and Michael Clark banned.
Wick Academy v Clachnacuddin
Wick's only absentee is Ross Allan for the visit of Clach, who have won their last six games but are without several players for their trip north. Martin Callum, Scott Morrison, John Mackay, Chris Ross, Ross Grant, Neil MacDonald, Stephen MacKenzie, Blair Lawrie and Scott Graham are all sidelined.
Deveronvale have signed defender Zander Jack from Keith.
Jack has been a regular for Keith this season, making 20 appearances for the Maroons. However Deveronvale have now swooped for the former Elgin City player, and manager Charlie Charlesworth was pleased Jack opted to join up at Princess Royal Park.
"I am very pleased to announce that Deveronvale have secured the signature of Zander Jack from Keith. Zander is a no nonsense player who is equally comfortable on his left or right foot. He has a fantastic attitude for the game and while aggressive and tenacious, he is also very intelligent and can read situations well.
"Zander gives us a number of options from the back line to midfield. With the loss of Watty and more recently Kevin, due to injury, Zander is likely to play more left sided than anywhere else, but, he is also a very strong contender for other positions as required.
"He is a passionate player and a leader on the park. Zander should enjoy our style of play and contribute to the squads capability. He is another player in a group that are 22 years of age.
"I would like to thank Bob McLardy for his continued assistance in the negotiations to bring Zander to the club."
Jack is the latest in a series of comings and goings at Kynoch Park over the last few days. Manager Graham McBeath signed Ellon United midfielder Scott Whelan in time for Saturday's game against Forres Mechanics, with Whelan coming off the bench after 36 minutes to replace Jack.
However joining Jack in leaving Kynoch Park is Craig Phillips, who has signed for junior outfit Banks O'Dee, meanwhile striker Jonathan Cook has been placed on the transfer list.