League One Montrose will face Fraserburgh at Bellslea in the Scottish Cup third round on Saturday April 3 after overpowering Nairn County at Station Park last night.
County manager Ronnie Sharp made no excuses when he said: “I thought Montrose were very good, although it didn’t help that we conceded as many poor goals as we did.
“We don’t have the experienced players you need for a game like this, especially after only being able to train for the last two weeks.
“We didn’t really perform on the night and we lost confidence after going down early-on and the speed they played at was just too much for us.”
The Gable Endies opened the scoring in the 11th minute when Aidan Quinn’s 12 yard angled drive eluded Dylan MacLean at his near post and four minutes later Craig Johnston guided the ball home from 12 yards.
Montrose made it 3-0 in the 25th minute, Johnston’s header came off the face of the crossbar and Quinn was on-hand to nod home his second goal of the game from six yards.
Two minutes from the break Montrose added another with a superb 20-yard grounder from Russell McLean.
Just before the hour County reduced the leeway when Tom MacLennan’s ferocious low 20-yard free kick gave Allan Fleming in the Montrose goal no chance.
On the hour, Johnston restored Montrose’s four-goal advantage with a crisp 10-yard finish for his second goal of the night, and in the 71st minute substitute Lewis Hawke turned in number six from close-range.
Johnston grabbed his hat-trick in the 81st minute with an acute 12-yard near-post drive.