Let’s Talk About Six
Breedon Highland Football League
SAT AUG 4, 2018.
Inverurie Locos 6 Huntly 3
Locos: Reid Rennie (Crisp) Mitchell Duff Souter Broadhurst McCabe Smith (Charlesworth) Gauld (Herd) Angus Leyden. Unused subs: T Reid Watt Cooper Cook Huntly: Storrier Jack Johnston Clark McRitchie Murison (McDonald) Booth (Andrews) Still McGowan Ross Napier (McKeown). Unused subs: Farquhar Ritchie Hay Ref: Paul Cummings Match Stats, Locos First. Shots ON 10-6, Shots OFF 3-9, Corners 4-6, Fouls 18-18, Offside 1-1. Yellows 1-5, Reds 0-1. The thirty fifth SHFL between these Gordon neighbours was an action packed affair from start to finish & come quarter to five Inverurie Locos had bagged their three hundredth Highland League victory. Huntly had toiled somewhat to a timid reverse at home to Turriff Utd in their opening match in contrast to the homesters who pocketed all the points at Buckie before a thrilling win over Fraserburgh in the Irn Bru Cup. Skipper McLean was injured but goalscorer extraordinaire Neil Gauld was able to start. Another good crowd was inside Harlaw Park with the now expected high temperatures ensuring that the patrons would have a comfortable viewing experience. These matches being played on lovely warm days certainly makes folk cast their thoughts towards a summer season. Locos were attacking the Railway End but the ground was left in a hushed early silence after Jonny Smith fell awkwardly & was clearly left in considerable discomfort. The new Loco was stretched off with Colin Charlesworth talking to the field. As is both understandable & often the case, the match became flat for a brief time after the bad injury, with Locos not a patch on the side that finished the midweek cup-tie so strongly. Gauld turned neatly & made Storrier make a stop with McGowan doing likewise with Reid at the other end. Huntly were one up on sixteen minutes & it was a terrible one to lose. Michael CLARK was unchallenged as he headed past Reid. The scorer then smashed the ball out of the ground long after a free kick had been given, escaping a yellow, a call that would later allow him to see out the ninety minutes. Clark then led with an elbow leaving the match referee with no option to prescribe a caution. Storrier then fumbled a Gauld drive but collected the ball swiftly. Huntly were conceding free kicks like there was no tomorrow, & their indiscipline was to lead to a Locos leveller. Joe MCCABE stood over the ball twenty two yards out, a relative tap in for the Englishman given his stunner from further on Wednesday. Joe curled a cracker into the net, 1-1. McGowan also escaped a yellow for ongoing dissent as ref Cummings tried to keep a lid on things without going gung ho with the cards. Huntly got into a right mess at the back on forty two minutes with GAULD capitalising to send Inverurie in at the break ahead, with McGowan’s overdue yellow coming right on the whistle. Second half & Jack dived in on McCabe with all the studs showing, the referee quite rightly contenting himself with a yellow, as whilst the tackle was ill-advised, it wasn’t malicious. Locos were two ahead on fifty four minutes. Angus prodding towards goal but the pocket poacher GAULD crashed it home before the ball crossed the line. McRitchie was skinned again by Gauld before the Inverurie attacker was tripped. Many referees would have invited the tall Huntly lad to leave the park, as it didn’t look like a genuine attempt to play the ball, but again the referee is to be commended for trying to keep the full compliment of players on the park. Neil netted four times in this game last term & completed his hat-trick easily. A Murison tumble in the box didn’t hoodwink the referee & really Locos should have been further in front. Napier hit a crisp drive over but it was 5-1 on sixty five minutes, ANGUS scoring after a great run by Mitchell. Inverurie then gave game time to Crisp & Herd, with Gauld & Rennie rested. Complacency then set in with CLARK allowed a carbon copy free header. McCabe was then chopped down off the ball with McKeown yellowed for a cynical jersey pull. Locos regained a four goal advantage with DUFF shooting from long range with Storrier contriving to make a proper dogs’ dinner of a routine catch, spilling the ball over his shoulder & in. The scorer was then on the wrong end of a terrible lack of control from Kai Ross. The Huntly player lashing out at the former Dons & Dundee Utd man in an ugly moment, straight red & an outbreak of handbags for a moment. Joe McCabe got dragged into the silliness that had been festering most of the day & was cautioned. Stand in gaffer Skinner was then invited into the stand after too much criticism & gesticulating. An observer might feel that had the standside linesman ensured that the Huntly staff remain in their technical area that these flashpoints of frustration could be avoided. A MCGOWAN free kick found its way inside the right stick of Andy Reid’s goal as Locos managed to turn easy street into hard work avenue. They were never going to lose this derby but will need to quit the habit of conceding soft goals when facing the stronger sides. However if your glass is half full it was a week that gleaned six points & a huge cup-tie win, with these lapses sure to be worked on by Messrs Cooper & Park. Locos had beaten Huntly at home for the eighth fixture in a row & had served them two sixes & a seven in the last three meets. Weds sees the Locos at Turriff Utd with Saturday & Tuesday week seeing the double header against Formartine in the SHFL/Irn Bru cup respectively.