This­tle ready for tough bat­tle with Broch

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - SPORT -

4-3 tri­umph at Rothes. Ni­col­son is well aware of the task ahead but he has done his home­work.

He said: “I went through to Aberdeen on Wed­nes­day to watch Fraser­burgh in their Aberdeen­shire Shield semi-fi­nal at Banks o’ Dee.

“Op­po­nents don’t re­ally come much tougher than Fraser­burgh, as they beat league lead­ers Cove Rangers 1-0 last week­end. They’re the only team to take any points off Cove this sea­son.”

Broch boss Mark Cowie said: “Strath­spey are one of the form teams at the mo­ment and tra­di­tion­ally we tend to strug­gle up there. It’s go­ing to be even tougher af­ter beat­ing Cove last week and we will have to raise our game even higher for this one.”

In to­day’s other league game Lossiemouth host Clach­nacud­din in a base­ment bat­tle with Clach in 16th spot, six points clear of Lossie.

Lossie man­ager Joe Rus­sell said: “A vic­tory would put us within touch­ing dis­tance of Clach so it’s a match we’re very much look­ing to win.”

Clach boss Brian MacLeod said: “We have both had a poor first half of the sea­son so it’s an op­por­tu­nity for us to pick up valu­able points.” A spec­tac­u­lar strike from Jack Henry at the start of the sec­ond half earned Wick a place in the Semi Fi­nals of the High­land League Cup at the ex­pense of For­res Me­chan­ics at Harmsworth Park.

The vis­i­tors threat­ened first when Rob­bie Dun­can­son’s shot brought a fine save from Sean McCarthy in the 11th minute.

Wick re­sponded im­me­di­ately and Marc Macgre­gor’s ef­fort was blocked be­hind for a cor­ner by Stu­art Knight in the For­res goal.

Knight then pro­duced two su­perb saves to firstly push a Ross Al­lan strike wide of the post, then tip Andy Hard­wick’s pow­er­ful header over the cross­bar from the re­sul­tant cor­ner.

The home side con­tin­ued to press for an opener and just be­yond the half hour mark Jack Hal­l­i­day’s lob came back off the post with Knight beaten and was cleared to safety.

Five min­utes from the break Gra­ham Fraser did bril­liantly to head a Hal­l­i­day drive off the line and keep the scores level at half-time.

Four min­utes af­ter the restart Wick de­servedly took the lead when Jack Henry ri­fled home a halfvol­ley from fully 30 yards to open the scor­ing.

The vis­i­tors came close to lev­el­ling the scores in the 57 th minute, as Ross MacPher­son’s header from a cor­ner crept just wide of McCarthy’s left-hand post. For­res ap­plied some late pres­sure, but Wick’s res­o­lute de­fence kept them at bay and the home side held on for a de­served vic­tory and a spot in the last four of the com­pe­ti­tion.

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