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1
Buckie 
27
+73
66
2
Brora 
29
+62
66
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65
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Formartine 
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+31
55
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+24
54
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+26
48
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GRANT STREET PLOT PROVES TO BE A DAMP SQUIB
 
Clachnacuddin 2-1 Deveronvale
 
Scorers: McLennan 14 & 81 Sutherland 45
 
Daniel McLennan netted twice as Clach stole all three points with a stand and deliver performance rather than a gunpowder plot in this rather entertaining encounter which saw the Banffers hit the underside of the cross bar and the post in their quest to bang in a much deserved winner during a more or less one-sided second forty five minutes.
 
You have to be able to defend proficiently though and McLennan's double was preventable which was the only disappointing aspect to come out of this Bonfire Night fixture in which Steve Dolan's side controlled for large parts whilst failing to find the all-important third goal.
 
Matthew Mackie made his debut for the Vale in the absence of the injured James Blanchard while Callum Murray was also thrown straight into the Banffers starting line-up with Scott Begg and Chris Blackhall also returning for Steve Dolan's 'not so injured for a change' side.
 
 A cool Northern Breeze met the players as the visitors kicked off and very nearly grabbed the lead when new signing Callum Murray swung a ball in from the right and Grant Noble had a quick glimpse of goal but failed to work Aiden Macdonald in the Clach sticks as the ball sailed over the top from the under pressure Granty.
 
Paul Sutherland was on fire and well up for this one as his whipped cross just eluded Dane Ballard while at the opposite end Matthew Mackie was quickly off his line to smother the ball at the feet of the ever dangerous Daniel McLennan.
 
With fourteen minutes played the home side grabbed the initiative slightly against the run of play, Blair Lawrie dashed to the left bye-line and although his low ball into the box looked defendable enough a mis-hit clearance allowed Daniel McLennan enough time to swivel 12-yards out and plant the ball beyond Matthew Mackie.
 
As in most matches the game swung in the favour of the scorers momentarily and David McGurk wasn't far away with a header which just cleared the cross bar from a Blair Lawrie corner kick before McLennan pulled another one wide after a mix up between Vale's two central defenders, Stevie Fraser and Steven Kinsi Davidson.
 
A smart attacking move from the Banffers saw Paul Sutherland pick out Grant Noble in room at the edge of the Lilywhite's penalty area and although the Vale number ten got his shot away Aiden Macdonald was equal to it as he threw himself to his left to turn the effort away for a fruitless flag kick.
 
With five minutes of the half remaining Michael Finnis found himself through one on one with Matthew Mackie but the debutant keeper stood up well to deny the right-back as the Lilywhite's got through far too easily and beyond the Banff defence.
 
With virtually seconds of the half remaining Paul SUTHERLAND made sure the teams went in level when he turned neatly deep inside the Clach danger area before finding the bottom corner following some sustained pressure from Steve Dolan's side which was started by the scorer being fouled as he darted down the right flank. HT
 
Things were tight at the start of the second period with both sides working hard off the ball although the visitors came very close to grabbing the lead, Paul Sutherland was once more the instigator as his low ball fell nicely for Dane Ballard only for a Lilywhite's defender to arrive on cue to block the Vale striker's effort on goal from point blank distance.
 
The Banffers were extremely unlucky once again when Scott Begg's header came back off the underside of the cross bar following Callum Murray's ball in from the left while some great play from the on loan Buckie midfielder minutes later saw his close control open up some room inside the Clach box only to watch in agony as his strike on goal was touched onto the far post by Aidan Macdonald before falling to safety.
 
Graeme Watt replaced Grant Noble with fifteen or so to go and from his first piece of action which was taking a corner from the right side the Vale almost netted once more, Stevie Fraser heading straight into the arms of Aidan Macdonald from an unmarked position
 
A double stop from Macdonald kept Clach in it with ten to go, the keeper denying Dane Ballard after the Vale number nine had flicked Paul Sutherland's low centre goalwards and then substitute Graeme Watt's low banger with his legs and the Vale's lack of fire in front of goal came back to bite moments later.
 
The Banffers losing the match when Matthew Mackie gave away a free kick when he handled accidentally outside his area and as Blair Lawrie's set-piece came into the back post area it was headed straight into the path of Daniel McLennan who simply rocketed high into the net to grab an unlikely three points for the Invernesians.
 
Vale: Mackie, *77 Jack, Forbes, Begg (cpt), Fraser, Davidson, Sutherland, *37 Blackhall, Ballard, Noble (Watt 72), Murray
Subs: Keith, Manson, Dunbar, Archibald, Ross, Sutherland (gk)
 
Clach: Macdonald, Macintosh (Penwright 59), Finnis, *65 Scott-Woodhouse, McGurk, *20 Lawrie, Robertson, *41 Beeston (Kennedy 70), Smith, *52 McLennan (Macdonald 82)
Subs: MacKillop, Shewan, Macleod
Manager: Iain Polworth
 
Referee: Alan Newlands
 
Vale Stats:
Efforts On: 6
Efforts Off: 3
Woodwork: 2
Corners: 6
Offside: 2
Overhead Conditions: Cool Northern Breeze
Playing Surface: Soft
Temp at KO: 7 deg C
Last Season: 1-2
 
Reporter: Neil Montgomery
Reported LastEdited: 6-Nov-2016
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