Huntly 1
Wick Academy 0


1 - 0

Wick Academy

Saturday, April 20th, 2019
Christie Park
3:00 PM Kick-off

Aidan Elliott Sopel (43) None.

Team Managers
Charlie Charlesworth Tom McKenna

Starting Eleven
Craig Reid
Blair Johnston
Michael Clark
Ryan McRitchie
Glenn Murison
Ross Still
Kai Ross
Nicholas Gray
David Booth
Matthew McDonald
Bradley Manson
Sean McCarthy
Andrew Hardwick
Marc MacGregor
Gordon MacNab
Sam Mackay
Richard Macadie
Grant Aitkenhead
Ben Sinclair
Alan Hughes
Ross Allan
Craig Gunn

Euan Storrier
Aidan Elliott Sopel
Cameron Booth
Cory Ritchie
Cameron Chyla
Christopher Hay
Gordon Clark
Cameron Montgomery
Greg Mackay
Mark Macadie

Aidan Elliott Sopel for Nicholas Gray (20)
Cameron Booth for David Booth (77)
Greg Mackay for Grant Aitkenhead (59)
Mark Macadie for Alan Hughes (80)

Kai Ross (70) None.

Red Cards
None. None.

Match Officials

Paul Cummings (Referee)
Craig Veitch & Craig Walker (Assistants)

Match Report

An understrength Wick Academy side lost 1-0 at Huntly on Saturday, a result that means the Scorries still have work to do if they are to claim a top-seven place in the Highland League.
With several first-pick defenders absent, Academy lined up at Christie Park with a back four of Craig Gunn, Andrew Hardwick, Sam Mackay and Ross Allan. There was also a first start for two 17-year-olds in midfield, Ben Sinclair and Grant Aitkenhead.
Gunn almost caught sub keeper Euan Storrier napping with a 35-yard free-kick and Hardwick headed wide from the resultant corner. David Booth looked certain to score in a swift counterattack but he was halted in the box by Allan’s perfectly timed sliding tackle.
After 42 minutes Aidan Sopel got on the end of a cross from Kai Ross to head home the only goal.
The Scorries’ best opportunity came after 75 minutes when Storrier could only palm down another Gunn free-kick. Although several Academy players kicked the ball in the ensuing scramble, none could direct it on target.
Huntly finished the game strongly and Aitkenhead bravely blocked a goal-bound pile-driver from Matt McDonald. Huntly’s win extended their unbeaten end-of-season run to six matches, while Academy require a point from the last game at Fort William this Saturday to secure seventh spot.
Manager Tom McKenna says Wick Academy will have a bright future if the current crop of talented youngsters can fulfil their potential.
He was speaking after drafting in five teenagers to the squad for the Scorries’ penultimate match of the Highland League season at Huntly on Saturday.
Although an under-strength Wick side lost 1-0 after Aidan Sopel’s first-half header, McKenna insisted there was no reason to feel despondent. As well as highlighting the impact made by two 17-year-olds who were in the starting line-up for the first time, the manager praised the senior players who were asked to fulfil unorthodox roles in a makeshift defence.
“I thought the lads were absolutely brilliant – I don’t think you could ask for any more from any-one,” McKenna said. “Sam Mackay was in at the centre of defence and Craig Gunn was in at right-back. Ben Sinclair and Grant Aitkenhead both started the game – they’re only 17, and neither of them looked out of place. “Young Ben is a fantastic prospect. He was in there with big physical lads and he wasn’t intimidated at all. He contributed to the game immensely.
“Once again when the lads had their backs against the wall the performance was excellent. We deserved at least a point.
“It’s frustrating. You go into every game wanting to win it, but we can’t be too despondent. The lads deserved something from it.” He added: “With the young boys that are round about, the future looks bright for the club going for-ward if they can develop as much as we anticipate.
“At the moment we’ve got some players in the latter stages of their careers. If these lads can come in next year and push forward it makes for a better club in the long term.”

Match report written by Caithness Courier - Wed, April 24, 2019.

Squad Statistics (as at April 20th, 2019)

2018/2019 All Time
Sean McCarthy (GK)25 32 - 168 -
Andrew Hardwick26 215606
Ross Allan25 11121811
Alan Hughes23 27 - 974
Ben Sinclair17 1 - 2 -
Grant Aitkenhead17 7 - 7 -
Richard Macadie32 367526194
Sam Mackay30 263324139
Gordon MacNab24 3685414
Marc MacGregor24 311512239
Craig Gunn31 3368335
Greg Mackay (sub)17 5 - 6 -
Mark Macadie (sub)16 3 - 3 -

League Table (as at April 20th, 2019)

Pld W D L +/- Pts
1. Cove Rangers 34 30 3 1 +88 93
2. Brora Rangers 34 27 4 3 +87 85
3. Fraserburgh 34 26 1 7 +88 79
4. Formartine Utd 34 22 6 6 +60 72
5. Inverurie Locos 34 20 6 8 +48 66
6. Forres Mech 34 21 3 10 +39 66
7. Buckie Thistle 34 14 7 13 +18 49
8. WICK 33 14 7 12 +11 49
9. Huntly 34 14 7 13 -8 49
10. Rothes 34 13 8 13 +16 44
11. Nairn County 34 13 3 18 -6 42
12. Deveronvale 34 13 2 19 -10 41
13. Keith 34 10 7 17 -6 37
14. Strathspey 34 10 3 21 -43 33
15. Turriff United 34 9 5 20 -17 32
16. Clachnacuddin 34 6 6 22 -35 24
17. Lossiemouth 34 2 2 30 -110 8
18. Fort William 33 0 2 31 -220 -7

Manager's Programme Notes

Both Grant Aitkenhead and Ben Sinclair started their first senior match for Academy today.