Inveraray thwart Lochside’s title hopes
Reigning champions Lochside Rovers beat the Inveraray second team 3-2 in their 1pm throw-up at the Winterton, but it wasn’t enough to retain the Marine Harvest South Division 1 title.
Ahead of the match, Lochside learnt Kilmory, who have been unable to complete the season because of team raising difficulties, had all their results for the fixtures already played this season erased.
This meant Lochside went into their final match trailing leaders Bute, who have completed their league programme, by two points but, significantly, the islanders held a goal difference advantage of six goals. Newly-promoted Inveraray were guaranteed an eighth placed finish no-matter the outcome.
Inveraray took the lead on four minutes through Craig Taylor, before the home side lost veteran David MacPherson to a nasty knee injury. Daniel MacCuish was a little fortunate referee John Wood only booked him for late swing following a melee. Lochside levelled on 41 minutes. Gregor Mather used his hand to stop a long range Lewis Buchanan shot but Michael MacQueen reacted quickest and slotted the ball in from close range to make it 1-1 at half time.
Lochside made a strong start to the second half and got two quick goals to raise Oban hopes. Ross Campbell made it 2-1 on 49 minutes before scoring again after 64 minutes to make it 3-1.
Inveraray dug deep, and scored a second following a great Gary MacPherson shot following a pass from his brother Graham.
This was a last match in charge for Lochside boss Gareth Evans and his Inveraray counter-part Graham MacPherson, and both will be greatly missed by their clubs.