Tokely’s Cattachs retain North Cup but Lossie give them run for their money

Brora goalscorers Kyle MacLeod (left) and Martin Maclean.

Brora Rangers retained the North of Scotland Cup but were made to fight all the way by a spirited Lossiemouth side battling to the bitter end and, with a bit of luck, may have taken the game to extra time at Grant Street Park, Inverness.

There was no doubting the quality of the Cattachs play, however, and manager Ross Tokely was delighted with the victory.

“We created chances throughout and were the team always pushing to get the goal, constantly on the attack. Lossiemouth were playing on the counter. They were always really going to get only one chance but they hit our crossbar and Cameron Mackay made a great save.

“We had to take off Craig Gunn as he was feeling dizzy and sick. We brought on Kyle Macleod, who has been out for nearly two months and has worked hard to get fit again.

“We also felt it was a good time to get Steven Mackay on, he has probably been our best player this season at left back.

“It’s a nice platform to move on, credit to the player.”

From the outset the Dudgeon Park side started to win corners on both sides, Colin Williamson missing a gilt-edged chance in 21 minutes by heading over from a few yards out Gavin Morrison, Scott Graham and Zander Sutherland also failed to hit the target as the half finished goalless. But nine minutes after the restart a composed, placed effort from 22 yards by Martin McLean left Stewart Black beaten diving to his left

Black made an acrobatic stop to keep out a powerful Kyle Macleod header.

The Coasters made a big push to equalise and from outside the box Ross Archibald beat Mackay with a clever chip but his effort came back off the crossbar.

Right at the end Macleod sealed the win with an easy tap-in rebound after Black failed to hold Paul Brindle’s cross from left.

Lossie player-manager Ian Macrae was an inspirational figure at the heart of his defence and was bitterly disappointed.

He said: “I’m proud of every one of them, our goalkeeper made great saves but it’s the story of our season, we’ve conceded soft goals.

“We scared Brora in the last 20 minutes.

“I cannot fault any of the players. We have the basis of a good squad and hopefully the board allows me to bring in a couple of players. We take it on the chin but I am enjoying playing and coaching the players around me and they enjoy me being around them. The fans were brilliant.”