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Matchday Summaries: Saturday 28th September

Brora Rangers and Formartine United both won to maintain their positions at the top of the Highland League, with both teams impressively still to drop a point eight games in.

Brora had to come from behind to defeat Fort William 6-1, with Steven Mackay netting a first-half hat-trick. Formartine were 3-0 winners against Rothes, with a second-half goal from Paul Napier adding to strikes before the break from Cammy Keith and Daniel Park.

Champions Cove Rangers bounced back to winning ways with a fine 3-2 win against Forres. In doing so they came back from behind twice, before Ryan Stott won the game in the 37th minute. Crucially, Forres missed a first-half penalty which would have put them 2-0 in front.

Buckie Thistle came from behind to defeat Inverurie Locos and inflict a second straight defeat on the Garioch outfit, while Wick Academy were 5-2 victors against Lossiemouth in an entertaining clash, with Richard Macadie on target twice.

Nairn County defeated Strathspey Thistle 3-1 at Station Park, while Fraserburgh ran out comfortable 4-0 winners against Keith with Scott Barbour and Willie West both scoring twice. 

Deveronvale netted twice in the second-half to defeat Clachnacuddin at Grant Street Park. Meanwhile an entertaining game at Christie Park saw Huntly draw 2-2 with Turriff United.

Full reports to follow shortly.


Three-goal Gethins brings Nairn back with a bang

 Nairn County returned to scoring style big time against Inverurie Locos on Saturday after defeats by Keith and Linlithgow Rose. Inevitably, well to the forefront of their success was last season's Highland League Player of the Year Conor Gethins.

The pint sized forward who plied his trade in the League of Ireland with Finn Harps before coming to Scotland and featuring for Ross County and Peterhead, netted a hat trick as the Wee County demolished Locos ten game long unbeaten record this campaign.

The three goals take the Irishman on to the twelve goal tally in 2013/2014 and with his 30th birthday less than six weeks ago there is an unquenching thirst for more success with the Station Park club in what is the third season of his three year contract.

"We're a team that has been waiting to explode. The main thing we did was work really hard as a team. Maybe in recent weeks we've not been working so hard, but when a team of our quality does it there's only one outcome.

"When we lost the goal in the early seconds, I thought here we go again, but there was a really good feeling on the bus coming down the A96. There was no laughter because I could see everyone was really focused.

"When a goal goes against you that early there is still 89 minutes left on the clock. It makes you work even harder. As soon as I got my free kick goal five minutes later I felt we dominated from there. We just kicked on and don't feel we we were under any real spells of pressure."

A two goal advantage looked on at the break until Martin Bavidge reduced the leeway with his second of the day and that just fired up the Irishman and his team mates even more.

"We had a few rants at half time as you cannot give away silly goals at places like Harlaw Park. They could have got it to level pegging but my second goal was one I savoured to put us back two in front. I'll not score many headers this season.

"The fifth goal saw me being clear of offside as I wasn't interfering then when the ball was fed through to me, my choice was to chip the goalkeeper."

Although it's been an inconsistent start for Les Fridge's team with several defeats and blank scoresheets along the way, two summer signings have made a big difference in his opinion.

"Daniel Moore and Stuart Leslie give us energy. And spirit. Danny will admit he's not been firing on all cylinders to date. But in this game he put in some great balls that's what he's all about With Stuart what you see is what you get. 100% effort every game, wins headers, rumbles players up and makes a lot of good runs.

"We need to push on, we've beaten Cove and Inverurie but let other games slip by. We cannot do that. After a result like this teams will be looking over their shoulders and saying Nairn are starting to push on."

Midweek Summaries Wednesday 25th September 2013





Formartine United




Scorers: Cameron Keith (30, 65) Scott   Fraser (53 og)


Scorers: Shawn Scott (85)


Andrew Shearer, Stephen Jeffrey, Stuart   Smith, Hamish Munro, Ross Campbell, Gary Clark (Paul Napier 76), Daniel Park,   Neil McVitie, Cameron Keith, Michael Ewen, Calum Bagshaw


Darren McConnachie, Connor Rennie, Kevin   Adams, Scott Henry, Scott Fraser, Graeme Rodger, Colin Charlesworth (Ross   Aitken 64), John Urquhart, Shawn Scott, Martin Charlesworth (76), Graeme Watt   (Craig Simpson 64)


Subs:, Ewen Ritchie, Liam Paterson, Mark   Smith & John Calder (GK)


Subs:, Craig Cowie, , & Philip Watt


Booked: Gary Clark (43), Michael Ewen   (48), Stephen Jeffrey (52)


Booked: John Urquhart (52), Graeme Rodger   (60) Scott Fraser (75)


Sent Off:


Sent Off:


Referee: Craig Sim




Formartine United have moved back into a share of top spot tonight as two more goals from Cammy Keith helped them clinch all three points from a tricky clash with Deveronvale to extend their 100% record in the SHFL so far this season. Both they and Brora have now bagged 21 points with Wick dropping back to third with 19.

The first chance fell to the Vale with a John Urquahrt free kick picking out Shawn Scott at the edge of the box and he forced Andy Shearer into a diving save. Mike Ewen got a shot on target from 20 yards following a partial clearance from Scott Fraser but the Vale soon threatened again with a John Urquhart free kick that sent Andy Shearer sprawling across goal to save.

Ross Campbell very nearly divered a Graeme Rodger cross into his own goal before Graeme Watt sent a great ball across the face of goal having skipped past Stuart Smith but there were no takers. The Vale were on top, but Formartine took the lead on the half hour mark with a clinical counter attack. A corner was cleared down the right with Daniel Park releasing Michael Ewen and he played the ball to Cammy Keith. With his first touch of the game he rounded Connor Rennie to blast into the bottom corner from eight yards.

Eight minutes after the break Neil McVitie took advantage of the space afforded to him to cross from the right hand side and Scott Fraser headed the ball past his own keeper in his attempts to clear. Then the home team put themselves out of sight in the 65th minute when goal machine Cammy Keith got on the end of a Neil McVitie ball to poke it home from six yards out

The visitors should have pulled a goal back with Shawn Scott sliding in but he was unable to get the sort of connection required to turn the ball into the net. He was to get his goal in the end though as, with time running out, the Vale Biscuits was to bullet a diving header past Shearer from 8 yards out after a Graeme Rodger cross

Full Time: Formartine United 3 Deveronvale 1
Reporter: Brian Barclay

Midweek Preview: Wednesday 25th September 2013

Press and Journal Scottish Highland Football League
Wednesday 25th September 2013 

Formartine United v Deveronvale (8pm)

Formartine United will aim to maintain their 100% start to the league season, with a victory returning them level with Brora Rangers at the Highland League summit. Vale themselves are in fine form having recorded three straight wins.

This game was originally scheduled to take place at the beginning of the month, but was postponed due to Formartine's Ramsdens Cup quarter-final tie against Annan Athletic. 

Formartine have an unchanged squad from Saturday's game against Turriff United, with Craig McKeown, Joe Hamill and Mark Smith still sidelined. Manager Steve Paterson is therefore likely to name the same side that started at the Haughs.

Meanwhile Deveronvale have one or two slight injury concerns following Saturday's win against Huntly, but manager Charlie Charlesworth expects both will be fit. Michele Lombardi, Tom Hutchison and Kevin Duguid are unavailable.

Tonight's game kicks off at 8pm, with Craig Sim the man in the middle at North Lodge Park.

Shire Cup final to take place at Bellslea

After it was initially announced the Evening Express Aberdeenshire Cup Final would take place at Christie Park, it has been confirmed it will now in fact be held at Bellslea Park in Fraserburgh.

Complications had arisen around the initial choice of venue, given that Huntly have a home game against Wick Academy on the same day.

The decision has been made to change to the Broch however, meaning the trophy will therefore not require any travelling. Fraserburgh are Aberdeenshire Cup holders after a dramatic penalty shoot-out victory over this year's finalists Formartine United, who will aim to go one better and bag their first silverware since arriving in the Highland League in 2009.

They will face Inverurie Loco Works on Saturday 19th October, with kick-off brought forward to 2pm due to Neil McLean's Testimonial Dinner in Thainstone the same evening.

Matchday Stat Pack: 21st September 2013

Saturday saw the season's record for the earliest goal smashed in style by Martin Bavidge, who netted after just 21 seconds to put distance between himself and the previous record of two minutes. 

However the goal did come in what went on to become Locos' first defeat of the season, meaning Brora Rangers are now the only side to maintain an unbeaten record stretching the whole season. Indeed, their impressive 11-game winning streak has also produced seven clean sheets to put them at the top of the defensive charts too.

Formartine United's Cammy Keith became a "Penalty King" and a "Hat-trick Hero" for the third time this season, meanwhile Forres Mechanics and Rothes have now equalled Strathspey Thistle and Fort William's season record for the longest run of defeats - now stretching as far as six.


Matchday Summaries: Saturday 21st September

Lossiemouth and Fort William were both defeated in their Scottish Cup replays, each losing 3-1 to Culter and Newton Stewart respectively.

Lossie had initially taken an early second-half lead through Willie Mathers, however George McBain put the North Junior Superleague champions in front with a double. Allan Youngson wrapped up Culter's progression. 

They will face Newton Stewart in the second round, after the South of Scotland League side defeated Fort William. After trailing 2-0 at the break with Michael Gillespie sent-off, Darren Quigg brought the Fort back into the game with an early second-half penalty. However, Liam Muir sealed his hat-trick midway through the second-half for the the hosts.

In league business, Nairn came from behind to defeat Inverurie Locos 5-2, with Conor Gethins netting a hat-trick. Meanwhile, Brora remain top after a 1-0 win away to Forres Mechanics. Formartine also came from behind to defeat Turriff with Cammy Keith netting a treble, while Gary Weir acheived the same feat as Wick ran out 7-0 winners against a Rothes side under the management of Graham Roy for the first time.

Strathspey Thistle clinched their first win of the season, as they turned over a half-time deficit against Clach, with Terry Swinton netting late on the secure the three points.

Deveronvale defeated Huntly 3-2 in an entertaining encounter at Princess Royal Park, in which Vale leads were twice pegged back by the Black and Golds but substitute Craig Cowie's goal two minutes after entering the field was one too many for Dave McGinlay's men.

Buckie Thistle meanwhile ran out 2-0 winners at Keith.


Played Wins Draw Lost GD Points
Brora Rangers
Brora Rangers 34 31 2 1 107 95
Inverurie Locos
Inverurie Locos 34 23 6 5 58 75
Nairn County
Nairn County 34 24 3 7 47 75
Formartine United
Formartine United 34 22 6 6 52 72
Fraserburgh 34 23 2 9 45 71
Deveronvale 34 20 5 9 21 65
Cove Rangers
Cove Rangers 34 16 7 11 29 55
Wick Academy
Wick Academy 34 15 8 11 29 53
Forres Mechanics
Forres Mechanics 34 15 7 12 18 52
Buckie Thistle
Buckie Thistle 34 13 10 11 6 49
Clachnacuddin 34 13 7 14 3 46
Turriff United
Turriff United 34 13 5 16 3 44
Huntly 34 9 8 17 -27 35
Keith 34 9 2 23 -48 29
Lossiemouth 34 4 8 22 -59 20
Strathspey Thistle
Strathspey Thistle 34 3 3 28 -88 12
Rothes 34 3 3 28 -100 12
Fort William
Fort William 34 1 6 27 -96 9

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Recent Results

SHFL Week 42 - 16-05-2014 20:00
Fort William 1 : 4 Clachnacuddin
SHFL Week 41 - 10-05-2014 15:00
Wick Academy 6 : 1 Strathspey Thistle
Cove Rangers 5 : 3 Fort William
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Clachnacuddin 3 : 3 Buckie Thistle
SHFL Week 40 - 03-05-2014 15:00
Cove Rangers 3 : 0 Lossiemouth
Deveronvale 1 : 0 Buckie Thistle
Fort William 1 : 1 Wick Academy
Keith 1 : 3 Turriff United
Brora Rangers 2 : 1 Inverurie Locos
Clachnacuddin 1 : 1 Formartine United
SHFL Week 40 - 30-04-2014 20:00
Fort William 1 : 3 Keith
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Inverurie Locos 5 : 0 Turriff United
SHFL Week 39 - 26-04-2014 15:00
Buckie Thistle 0 : 1 Deveronvale
Turriff United 0 : 1 Brora Rangers
Cove Rangers 3 : 2 Clachnacuddin

Press and Journal Highland League Table (2013-14)

Played Wins Draw Lost GD Points
1 Brora Rangers 34 31 2 1 107 95
2 Inverurie Locos 34 23 6 5 58 75
3 Nairn County 34 24 3 7 47 75
4 Formartine United 34 22 6 6 52 72
5 Fraserburgh 34 23 2 9 45 71
6 Deveronvale 34 20 5 9 21 65
7 Cove Rangers 34 16 7 11 29 55
8 Wick Academy 34 15 8 11 29 53
9 Forres Mechanics 34 15 7 12 18 52
10 Buckie Thistle 34 13 10 11 6 49
11 Clachnacuddin 34 13 7 14 3 46
12 Turriff United 34 13 5 16 3 44
13 Huntly 34 9 8 17 -27 35
14 Keith 34 9 2 23 -48 29
15 Lossiemouth 34 4 8 22 -59 20
16 Strathspey Thistle 34 3 3 28 -88 12
17 Rothes 34 3 3 28 -100 12
18 Fort William 34 1 6 27 -96 9

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