RAMPANT RAILWAYMEN STAY ON TRACK FOR MOUNT FLORIDA STATION
William Hill Scottish Cup Round Two Saturday October 19th 2019 Rothes 1 Inverurie Loco Works 3. Inverurie Locos put in arguably their finest show of the 2019/20 season to send hosts Rothes out of the Scottish Cup & book their own place in Round Three of the national cup competition. Rothes: MacDonald Stark Wood (Main) Milne McRitchie Pollock McKenzie Robertson (Maley) Kerr (Wilson) Sutherland Cormack. Unused subs: MacLeod Johnstone Donaldson. Locos: A Reid T Reid Mitchell Burnett (Cooper) Souter Broadhurst Dingwall McLean (Watt) Angus Hunter Stott (Gauld). Unused subs: Cook Michie Gordon Gill Referee: Jordan Paterson. Stats (Locos First). Shots ON 5-5, Shots OFF 8-4, Fouls 9-10, Corners 6-9, Yellows 1-2, Offside 1-0. Inverurie Locos headed to Mackessack Park on Saturday, the scene of an SHFL reverse this term, but this time around it was to be the visitors who put in a tremendous shift & left the stadium the victors. Neil Cooper left the football club during the week so Coach Andy Low & Assistant Manager Steven Park took the side, Parky having netted in this tournament against Whitehill, Threave & Peterhead. Rothes, like the rest of northern Scotland, had been thoroughly monsooned ahead of the game, but the park was completely playable come the three o’clock kick off. Big Eric Watson had to serve a suspension following a clash in the victory over Wick Academy, so the solo goal hero against Keith, Mark Souter, reverted to centre half mode with Mitchell & Reid in the full back berths. A repeat of being bullied & over-ran was negated with a different shape. A good sized crowd was at the match as the weather swayed between late autumnal sunshine & heavy showers. This was matchday sixteen for the campaign & Scottish Cup tie number thirty six for the Railwaymen, and for the big popular goalie Andy Reid, it was Locos appearance number three hundred and fifty. A sign that goalie MacDonald might have issues was served on two minutes when he dropped a McLean cross. Alisdair Sutherland caught the ball well in firing towards goal but Reid saved well. Gary Kerr reacted with fury at a routine Locos free-kick award with referee Paterson staying calm and sufficing with a warning. Pollock volleyed well wide as the sides jousted for dominance, Locos winning the physical tussles & suggesting a positive afternoon was going to be enjoyed. Neil McLean burst forward and shot a yard over from distance. Twenty one minutes & one-nil to Inverurie. Chris ANGUS, Scottish Cup specialist, calmly netting after McLean had caused panic for Rothes. Ryan Stott was his usual energetic, hard-running self, & he drove wide of the left stick from the angle soon after. Ryan then tested MacDonald again, this time the goalie did pull off a fine save. Thirteen minutes before the break & Inverurie had one foot in the Third Round. Chris ANGUS netting his fifth Scottish Cup goal with a stunning scissors kick, the finish being a rebound from his own first shot. Top agility & technique that had the Chuff Chuff drumsticks birling into the dreich Speyside sky. Andy Hunter was working like a tall lean Trojan for the Locos, chasing right into the corners & allowing his team-mates to play the bulk of the game on the front foot. Hunts showed his trademark fleet footwork before unleashing a thumping attempt just over the bar. A grounded Pollock shot was easily fielded by Andy Reid as Rothes toiled to trouble the visitors. Gary Kerr did have Reid extended just before the break, a glancing header seeing Andy the glove king palm the ball away to safety. Locos were cracking value for a half time two goal advantage. Inverurie re-emerged from the tunnel knowing that the last half decade had seen a catalogue of disappointments in the national cup, after a run of three Round Three ties & two Round Four ties in the previous six campaigns. Rothes looked to be in on goal but a wonderful sliding Broadhurst challenge snuffed out any home team joy. Sam Burnett was making light of the heavy park, his class & composure shining through & he worked the goalie before a Dingwall shot deflected over. Skipper McLean had a moment to savour next. The evergreen, talismanic player picked up the ball wide on the left flank & flighted the ball towards goal. The Rothes keeper appeared to have ample opportunity to gather or at worst to punch away, but contrived to help the ball into his own net. The goal was officially awarded to Neil MCLEAN, his ninetieth for Inverurie & he had now netted in a competitive Locos match for the sixteenth campaign in a row – will we ever see his likes again? Inverurie were rampant now and an Angus lob landed on top of the net as he chased back to back Scottish Cup hat-tricks. Andy Watt entered for the scoring captain McLean. Greg Mitchell was his usual 110% committed self & blocked a rasping shot inside the Locos box with his inner thigh, the popular young man staying prone on the deck just long enough to ensure the Locos Committee & Locos supporters were certain which player had stopped a Speysiders goal! The full back on the opposite side, Tam Reid, had a fine match, winning his challenges, getting his positioning just right, & like his colleagues was composed & consistently finding a daffodil & royal blue jersey. Neil Gauld took to the field for Ryan Stott, with sub Aidan Wilson shooting wide then seeing a diving Reid repel another effort. Hunter drove the ball inches wide & Gauld headed over from ten yards. Locos broke quickly, from defending a Rothes corner well & having left players upfield, were able to gain territory & a numerical advantage. Chris Angus so close to that third goal. In overtime Rothes broke free with sub Jack MALEY’s effort just going over the line. The lightest of disappointments for Locos, with the rearguard deserving a clean sheet. Referee Paterson, who was noticeably right up with play from start to finish, & officiated with a light unfussy style, blew on the whistle to trigger loud cheers from all the Inverurie-minded folk in the crowd. FT Rothes 1 Locos 3. This was a fantastic afternoon for Inverurie Locos & a truly super squad performance. All eyes & ears will focus on the Round Three draw. Saturday sees a tough SHFL assignment, an away trip to Fraserburgh, Kick off 3pm.