ELLON United picked up their first league victory of the season with a 3-2 home win over Stonehaven at The Meadows last weekend. Things looked black for United at half time with the visitors 2-0 ahead thanks to a brace from their former skipper Ross Forsyth. United managed to turn things around after the interval with a much improved second half display which saw them come from behind to take full points. With Callum Steer unavailable, United were fortunately able to call on the services of former Buchanhaven, Maud and Cruden Bay keeper Willie Gatt to take over the goal.
Stonehaven forced the early pace and took only nine minutes to get their noses in front when Ross Forsyth moved clear on a simple through ball to lob the stranded Willie Gatt in the Ellon goal. Stonehaven kept up the pressure and seven minutes later a wicked in-swinging free kick found Taylor, but his back post header went wide. The United goal survived again in the 23rd minute. Willie Gatt managed to block the initial effort with Jonathon Millsom backing up to complete the clearance. A minute later, United’s first effort on goal saw Steven Reid shoot wide.
Ellon conceded a rash free kick which gave Stonehaven the chance to fire in another wind assisted in-swinger, but this time the effort was wasted. With just over half an hour played, Taylor hit a shot which came back off the bottom of the far post then within two minutes the Stonehaven wide man was given space to run forward before he won a free kick. The Ellon wall stood firm, and United countered quickly, but the attack broke down and when the ball was knocked straight back low through the middle, United were caught out again as Ross Forsyth cashed in on Ellon’s hesitant defending to grab his second. United hit back with Scott Whelan working his way forward only to be denied by a fine block from keeper Smith before a fine save from Willie Gatt prevented Stonehaven from adding to their half time lead.
United pulled themselves back into contention nine minutes into the second period, when a spell of home pressure ended with Callum Dunbar rising to head the ball back across goal and Ryan Stewart drifting in at the back post to open the home side’s account. United changed their formation in the 57th minute, shifting to a back three with Willie Mathers coming on for defender Chris Allsop.
The Stonehaven goal survived a scare in the 63rd minute when Paul Leahy beat Smith to a cross only to see his looping header drop over the bar. Seven minutes later, the United midfielder squared matters, following up to lash the ball home after Blair Johnston’s header off a long throw from Callum Dunbar had come back off the post. Paul Leahy then put United ahead with his second goal in the 74th minute, when he collected a diagonal cross and promptly fired the ball into the opposite corner.
Ellon United: Gatt, Millsom, Allsop (Mathers), Leahy, Lawson, Reid, Annand, Whelan, Dunbar, Stewart, Johnston, Tait, Bremner, Eadie, Johnson
Stonehaven; Smith, McLelland, McCall, Pyper, J McIntosh, Forsyth, Alexander, Linton, Stewart, Watt, Taylor, Arrowsmith, Shand, O McIntosh
Saturday’s fixture proved to be a complete change from the past few weeks, with United coming from behind to take the points after their poor first half showing.
United travel to The Broch next Saturday to face Fraserburgh united in the first round of the Dominos Pizza North Regional Cup.
The winning numbers in united’s weekly Lucky Si xdraw were: 2, 6, 8, 10, 13 and 15 and with no one picking the full set the kackpot for next week will be £1050 with the selection 16 from 19. Consolation prize winner was E Paton.