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Leaders Fraserburgh six points clear after Huntly win; Matty Tough gives Keith victory

Fraserburgh defender Bryan Hay.
Fraserburgh defender Bryan Hay.

A fifth successive league win helped Fraserburgh go six points clear at the top of the league following a 2-1 victory over Huntly at Christie Park.

Manager Mark Cowie was pleased to see his side go eight games unbeaten at that venue.

He said: “It’s not my favourite place to come for a win but we know what we’re up against every time we play Huntly – it’s a battle and you’ve got to win that first before you with the match.

“In the first half there wasn’t much between the two teams, we had chances we didn’t take and in the second half we were able to limit Huntly to fewer chances and we looked dangerous on the counter attack.”

Cowie was pleased to see defender Bryan Hay play his part at both ends of the pitch.

He added: “I think Bryan should be more dominant attacking because you can see how dominant he is when he’s defending corners.

“Ryan Cowie’s deliveries are always good and cause problems and it was good time to score as it eased us at that point in the game.”

Mark Cowie.

The Broch threatened early and an Aidan Combe crossed picked out Scott Barbour whose shot looked to be heading into the goal only for a last-ditch clearance from Michael Clark to keep the ball out.

Fraserburgh broke the deadlock after 19 minutes. A Ryan Cowie corner was met by Bryan Hay whose header found the net with the aid of a deflection.

Huntly levelled the scoring with ten seconds of the half remaining.

Alexander Jack won the ball and quickly played in Andrew Hunter who struck from 20 yards for his seventh goal of the season.

The visitors regained the lead in the 64th minute. Scott Barbour broke down the left and the quick break was finished off by Sean Butcher turning in from close range.

Huntly came close to equalising with seven minutes left. Greg Buchan drove forward and played in Joel MacBeath but the substitute’s chipped shot was held by Leask.

Despite the defeat, Huntly manager Allan Hale was pleased with the performance from his side.

He said: “I thought our players were outstanding, especially in the first half. We recovered well from the set piece goal and scored a great finish from Andrew Hunter with the equaliser who shows what he’s going to bring to us.

“It’s frustrating not to come away with a point. The players have put a lot into the game we’ve maybe lacked that quality in the last third.”

Clach 0-1 Keith

An improving Keith side got the better of Clach at Grant Street Park with Matty Tough’s headed goal earning the visitors the three points.

Keith manager Craig Ewen said: “We’re delighted to win at what is a tough away venue.

“It wasn’t the best footballing game I’ve seen, tricky conditions, a heavy pitch and a swirling wind down the park.

“The boys really dug in and showed great team spirit.

“The winner typified us on the day, a young lad desperate to get to the ball first and put it in the back of the net.

“I’m really pleased with the players as they worked really hard in the two midweek training sessions and got their reward with the three points.”

Keith manager Craig Ewen.

There were chances at both ends in the first half but no goals.

Five minutes after the break, the Maroons might have been awarded a penalty when James Brownie appeared to be toppled inside the penalty area, but play was waved on.

Matty Tough then screwed a shot inches past the post for Keith and Kieran Mooney was inches away minutes later.

Clach twice forced Keith’s loanee goalie Balint Demus into action, the youngster saving James Anderson’s low drive, then he kept out an Alasdair Gillies effort with his foot.

The deadlock was finally broken in the 79th minute when a Michael Selfridge corner saw Tough force his way in at the back post to head home from close range.

A couple of minutes later, the Maroons had a second penalty claim waved aside when they feel the ball had been handled inside the penalty area.

Clach manager Jordan Macdonald said “ I’m majorly disappointed as that was a game we didn’t deserve to lose but we have.

“We should have won, with the chances we created, Keith didn’t create anything.

“If you don’t take your chances you get punished.  We didn’t defend at set pieces and the deliveries from Keith were excellent so fair play to them.”

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