Buckie Thistle rather than Inverurie Locos will face Clach at Kynoch Park in the final of the Breedon Aggregates Highland League Cup on May 10, after the Jags delivered a win against the odds as they look to regain the trophy they won two years ago.
Locos were clear favourites in this fixture which came three days after a bruising home encounter with Deveronvale. There were four changes to the starting line up, Kieran Adams. Ryan Broadhurst, John Maitland Jordan Leyden coming in for Scott Begg, Greg Mitchell, Gordon Forsyth and Dean Donaldson. Mark Souter moved forward into the engine room from centre back.
In the early stages, Neil McLean’s flick from a Jordan Leyden corner forced ex-Red and Black midfielder Graeme Stewart to clear carefully. Then Jordan Leyden curled a 20 yard free kick around the Buckie wall, but there was too much height on it and the ball cleared the crossbar.
In their first attack, Buckie grabbed the lead. The ball was fed into the feet of Chris ANGUS who confidently struck a half volley towards Andy Reid’s right post and just inside the corner with the keeper at full strength . Within two minutes it was 2-0. Another ex Loco, Andy Low, linked with Craig MacMillan and when the ball was firmly delivered across the penalty spot area, Chris ANGUS tapped home his second goal with the home defence all at sea
The tempo of the game dropped dramatically but just before half time Martin Bavidge finally brought a save from Kevin Main with a header off a Jordan Leyden corner but there was little strength on the effort.
Within a minute of the resumption a goal back looked on when Leyden’s free kick came through a crowded box and it was a late deflection which was met by a reflex save by Main.
The tie was effectively all over in 50 minutes. Leyden gave away easy possession near the byline and it only needed two long passes before Chris ANGUS raced from the the half way line, drawing Reid off his line and slotting underneath him for the first hat trick of his career.
Throughout the game, Inverurie managed to chalk up an incredible 20 corners, none of which came close to troubling Main’s goal and the game was summed up by Neil McLean who looked to have been set up for tap in but the ball flew across the face of goal.
Locos finally pulled a goal back when Lewis MacKinnon’s clumsy barge on Neil Gauld off the ball just inside the box brought a penalty. Neil Gauld himself managed to force the spot kick past Main for his 39th of the season.
A McLean ball into the box found Bavidge whose footwork led him to force Main into another great save to smother the ball while at the other end former Locos forward Andy Low chipped Reid but the ball went just over his upright.
Inverurie Locos: Reid, McLean, Maitland Souter, Adams, Anderson, Leyden, Broadhurst, Gauld, Bavidge, Ross (Hunter 77)
Subs: Mitchell, Begg, Donaldson, Mathieson
Buckie: Main, S Wood, D Wood, Stewart, MacKinnon, Davidson, Angus, Kyle Gauld (S Gauld 71), MacMillan (Baxter 81), Low, Carrol (Munro 71)
Subs: Conway, Strong
Referee: G Beaton