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Inverurie Locos ease to victory against Strathspey Thistle; Nairn County triumph at Deveronvale

The Harlaw Park side enjoyed a first win of the season in the Breedon Highland League.

Locos captain Greg Mitchell. Image: Darrell Benns/DC Thomson.
Locos captain Greg Mitchell. Image: Darrell Benns/DC Thomson.

Inverurie Locos grabbed their first Highland League win of the season with a stylish showing to fend off bottom of the table Strathspey Thistle.

Locos interim boss  Jamie Watt said: “We spoke beforehand about the need to get a good start after putting so much effort into the Brechin game in midweek without success.

“The early goal really helped us and after that we could have had another two or three.

“But we didn’t take our chances and Strathspey had a wee spell where they grew in confidence.

“So the second goal came at a good time for us, helped us to move on and become more dominant.

“The big word of the day is confidence.

“The guys know they’re in a false position, we’ve been showing up well in recent games without the rewards.”

Locos broke the deadlock after only three minutes when a clever cross from right back Josh Buchan was met by captain Greg Mitchell at the back post.

His effort was saved by Callum Ligertwood but Mitchell was quick to respond and netted the rebound

Ligertwood made good saves to deny Jay Halliday and Sam Robertson while at the other end Zack Ellis tipped a Kane Davies free kick over the crossbar.

In 38 minutes Lloyd Robertson chipped an effort over the goalkeeper into the corner of the net after a clever pass from his brother Sam.

Only a minute after the restart Nathan Meres headed home goal number three and midway through the half made it four with Sam Robertson playing in substitute Blair Smith who teed up Meres to score.

The final goal came five minutes from the end, another substitute Cole Anderson curling the ball home, his first in Red and Black colours.

Thistle boss Robert McCormick said: “I’m pretty disappointed with the whole performance as we’re not giving ourselves opportunities by conceding early in each half.

“It gave us nothing to work with.

“It’s not good enough. For 20 minutes in the first half we were creating chances and doing well. We need some points on the board to build confidence”

Deveronvale 1-3 Nairn County

Nairn County ran out 3-1 winners against Deveronvale on a dreich day at Princess Royal Park.

Apart from the opening stages of the game when Cameron Angus had a shot well saved by Dylan MacLean, Nairn dominated throughout.

They went ahead after just nine minutes when Ciaran Young beat the home offside appeals to break on the left before squaring the ball for Ben Kelly to slot home from 16 yards.

Six minutes later Young made it two nil when after a flowing move he met the ball six yards from goal to loop a header over Sean McIntosh with Vale’s only response being a Jack Mitchell effort  that went just wide from inside the box.

Eight minutes after the restart Kenny MacKenzie’s corner picked out Fraser Dingwall in the six yard box and with no one marking him he sent a free header beyond McIntosh.

Vale grabbed a late consolation as Mikey Watson fired home from the edge of the box after an Innes MacKay ball picked out the substitute but there was to be no comeback as Nairn saw out the final minutes.

Nairn County manager Steven Mackay. Image: Jasperimage.

Nairn manager Steven Mackay was delighted with his teams performance on the day.

He said “It was a pretty dominant performance although we made it a little bit scrappy during the last 20 minutes when we lost a goal which was the only disappointment.

“To come here and get the three points on the back of Wednesday’s result made it a good week after the disappointment of losing at Buckie so it has been a good response from the lads.

“Our first two goals were very well worked and Ciaran Young could have got another in the first half when clean through.

“He chose to dink the keeper rather than go for power and that would have put us in the driving seat even more but I’m pleased with what we produced.”

Vale manager Craig Stewart said: “After playing so well on Wednesday (in a 3-3 draw with Banks o’ Dee) I think some of the boys thought that they just had to turn up on the day but football doesn’t work like that.

“You have to earn what you get from the game.

“We gifted them three goals which were shocking from our point of view and we never had anything in us going forward.

“We didn’t show enough quality and our retention of the ball was poor.

“I am angry because we were very good on Wednesday and in the Scottish Cup against Culter but our players need to learn quickly from their mistakes.”