Sam Mackay Signs Contract Extension

Sam Mackay Signs Contract Extension

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Wick Academy are delighted to announce that Sam Mackay has signed a contract extension that will see him with the club until 2020. This is Sam's 10th season with Wick Academy.

Academy Manager Tom McKenna is delighted that Sam has extended his contract, saying:

"To secure the services of Sam Mackay for another year is fantastic news for the football club and team. Sam has established himself as one of the main footballing figures in the Highland League and he is a big character within the team. Working with Sam week in week out you quickly recognise the qualities he possesses and his appetite for the game. Again, like all the players in our squad, he is a joy to work with".

Three Players Sign Contract Extensions

Three Players Sign New Contract Extensions

Last week the club secured the services of Davie Allan for a further 2 years. That follows the signings of Michael and Grant Steven who also extended their contracts. This is great news for all concerned at the club and reaffirms the family unit within and out-with the team. Wick Academy Manager Tom McKenna is delighted with the news saying "As a manager it's very pleasing to have players of this quality, experience and continued ambition at your disposal. They are three very individually talented players who are very much passionate about the game and the football club".

Macadie Presentation 500 Appearances

Richard Macadie made his 500th competitive appearance against Fraserburgh on Saturday the 1st September. League Secretary Rod Houston was at today's game against Rothes and presented Richard with a framed picture to mark his achievement.

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500 Appearances for Macadie

  Richard Macadie NC500

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Richard Macadie made his 500th competitive appearance (470 starts and 30 as a sub) for the ‘Scorries' at Bellslea Park, Fraserburgh and it couldn't have been scripted better; he arrived on cue early in the second half to net his 192nd Academy goal in a 3-2 triumph which knocked Fraserburgh from their perch at the top of the SHFL table.

On the way home he told Ken Wood some of his memories of his time with our club.

‘I've been playing football for as long as I can remember and started with East End at 8 years old. I played a game for Keiss at 14 and then, along with Craig Gunn, I went to Ross County where former Academy player Peter Budge was a youth team coach. Just after my 16th birthday in April 2003, they decided to put us out on loan as we were a bit young for the next season's Under 18s. For a while it seemed we might end up at Brora and actually that summer we both played a game for Wick Thistle away to Pentland United. Peter wasn't keen on us playing County League and fortunately he was able to get us to join Academy when Alistair Budge (no relation) was manager and I made my debut down at Huntly. I think we lost 1-0. It was an enjoyable season. We played in most of the games and Craig scored quite a few goals including a hat-trick at Cove when we won 4-3. He was the youngest player ever to score an SHFL hat-trick. I think he maybe still holds that record.'

Ken: You've scored some memorable goals yourself Richard.

Richard: Yeah the first one that comes to mind was against Locos in the Qualifying Cup. That would be soon after I was released by County in the summer of 2007. I remember the ball was sent through ahead of me down the right and Mark Simpson, a big tough defender, was there but I nicked the ball away from him and found myself in the clear, into the box, one on one with the keeper and fortunately managed to stick it away. That was early in the game and was the only goal. Locos had really fancied their chances. They were a top team and had flown up for the game.

My first hat-trick was soon after that at Rothes.

Ken: I remember that well. What a start to the game. You had three goals in the first 14 or 15 minutes. I felt sure you would beat your Grand-dad Bill Mackay's individual Academy scoring record.

Richard: Bill scored 6 at Brora in a cup tie but no, I only managed just the three at Rothes that day. My best obviously was five at Buckie when we won 7-0, in December 2012. Then, of course, it was Chuckie (Gary Weir) who got the record scoring all eight against Fort William at the Harmsworth Park.

Ken: You've scored several match winning goals over the years including that great run of ten wins in a row in 2009.

Richard: I scored two at Inverurie when we won 3-1 and I scored the only goal of the game there the previous season.

Ken: The committee and supporters really appreciate the commitment that all the players show with training and the travelling and especially yourself with 500 games now and Gary (Manson) who recently passed the 600 mark.

Richard: We don't really think about it to be honest. You're doing what you're doing and you just get on with it. It's the norm for us, living in Wick. We enjoy the away trips. The crack's always good on the bus. I've been lucky to be with the club at a time when we've had a lot of good, quality players. Everybody knows Chuckie was a good mate but there has always been good spirit with everyone included. We've had good times too with Testimonials - not just the games but the other events too like the golf day. I've been lucky to be involved with them all; Shoe (Martin Gunn), Craig (Shearer), Gary and Chuckie and now it's a privilege and honour to be awarded a Testimonial season myself.

Mason Clocks Up 600 Appearances

  Manson Clocks Up 600 Appearances For Wick Academy

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Gary Manson took to the field in last Saturday's game against visitors Deveronvale and clocked up his 600th competitive appearance for Wick Academy. His 600 games includes 545 starts and 55 appearances as a substitute, and he has chipped in with 43 goals. He is pictured following a presentation made to him after the game, photograph courtesy of Alan Hendry.

This is Gary's 19th season at the club. He made his debut on the 5th August 2000 in a game at Harmsworth Park against Cove Rangers, which the Scorries won 1-0. He was chosen as the supporters' player of the year at the end of last season. Interviewed by Alan Hendry after Saturday's game Gary looked back at his time with the club and said:

"In the main it has been enjoyable.

"At the start of my career we weren't as good a side as we are now so it was a bit of a struggle in the early days. We were generally finishing about fifth bottom or sixth bottom, but now we're pushing for top six if we can.

"There's a bit of a difference and I've seen a lot of changes - it's night and day from what it was when I started.

"I'm up to 43 goals now. If I can get to 50 before I finish I'll be happy."

Manson, an assistant project manager at Dounreay, may be edging towards the twilight of his Highland League career but he is as fit as ever and is not looking to call it a day quite yet.

"We'll see," he said. "I just take it year by year. I'll see if I'm still enjoying it and have still got the desire. I still think I'm fit enough and still think I'm contributing enough to the team every week.

"It's not just what the fans see on a Saturday. It's the training twice a week in all weathers, coming through from Thurso every Tuesday and Thursday, dodging hailstones and snow, and it'll be blowing a gale.

"I'll see if the motivation and enjoyment is still there at the end of the season and we'll see what happens."

Congratulations Gary on reaching this magnificent milestone in your career.