3 - 1
3 - 1
Richard Macadie (8)
Gary Weir (47)
Stevie Cunningham (53)
|Lee Fraser (88)|
James Pickles for Craig Shearer (63)
Shaun Sinclair for Michael Steven (71)
Bryan McKiddie for Gary Weir (81)
Nathan Sharp for Ryan MacKintosh (61)
Scott Lawrie for Craig McGovern (61)
Andrew Howard for Kyle Scott (79)
Michael Steven (49)
||Graham Fraser (49)|
Billy Baxter (Referee)
Wick Academy retain their 2 point advantage at the top of the table after beating current champions Forres Mechanics 3-1. A 350 to 400 crowd braved the freezing conditions to witness Academy extend their unbeaten run of home league games to 24. Lukasz Geruzel missed this one due to injury, but Alan Farquhar returned to the starting line-up.
A minutes silence was held before kick-off in respect of Academy coach George Groat who very sadly past away last Saturday night.
Richard Macadie had the Scorries one up after only 8 minutes, and Gary Weir doubled the advantage 2 minutes after the half-time break. Stevie Cunningham's 40 yard screamer in the 53rd minute put the game beyond doubt, the goal itself worth the entry fee. Lee Fraser pulled back a consolation for the visitors 2 minutes from full-time, in a game where they rarely threatened the Academy goal.
Academy played up the Harmsworth slope for the first half with a stiff wind blowing down the park. It was the home side that had the first venture into the penalty area within 2 minutes when a high ball was pumped into the Forres box. Keeper Stuart Knight rose to claim it under pressure from Sam Mackay and the Forres keeper collected, after looking to have at first fumbled his catch.
Forres attacked from Knight's kick-out and Lee Fraser stormed down the right wing and whipped in a dangerous cross that Grant Steven headed clear.
Ross Archibald then had a good shot on target that James More got down well to his left to save.
Academy opened the scoring in their next attack. Gary Manson floated a free-kick into the Forres box which was cleared. Craig Shearer managed to pick it up and had a shot on target which was blocked, but the rebound fell to Richard Macadie and he poked home his 21st league goal of the season from 5 yards out.
1 - 0
On the quarter hour Academy played some smart football up the right flank with Davie Allan charging on before slipping the ball into Sam Mackay. Mackay bent the ball around the outside of Simon Allan into the path of Macadie who crossed to the back post where Davie Allan tried to hit it on the volley, but he couldn't provide the perfect ending and scuffed the attempt wide of target.
Craig Shearer then had a goal chalked off as he just failed to stay on-side, before Academy again broke after defending a Forres free-kick. Sam Mackay turned the Forres defensive back line as he dinked the ball over their heads and onto Cunningham whose volley at goal was cleared for a corner.
Just before the half-hour Academy had a good series of passes working the ball to the edge of the Forres box before Michael Steven had a crack that went straight to keeper Knight.
Academy continued to press and Allan again had a run up wing before combining with Macadie who teed up Cunningham but he leaned back on his shot 20 yards out and fired it over the cross bar.
Academy were restricting Forres to longer range efforts and Archibald had an effort that was well gathered by More.
Forres had another pop on 38 minutes when Duncan Jones had a shot that flashed across goal and just wide of the back post.
Half Time - Wick Academy 1 - Forres Mechanics 0
Academy flew out of the bocks at the start of the second half and in the first attack doubled their lead. Cunningham controlled a pass before sliding Gary Weir into the penalty area wide on the left and from a tight angle he rifled his shot low past Knight into the far corner of the net.
2 - 0
After a few tough tackles Michael Steven and Graham Fraser squared up to each other and they both picked up a yellow card for their troubles.
On 53 minutes Stevie Cunningham scored a contender for goal of the season. He met a falling ball on the volley 40 yards from goal and fired a rocket on target that dipped over the top of Knight, who got fingers on it, but the ball crept under the cross-bar and bulged the net.
3 - 0
Forres kept plugging and Lee Fraser broke into the box, got a yard on Alan Farquhar and shot on target but More made a comfortable save.
Macadie then tried to emulate the feat of Cunningham when he smacked a shot from about the same distance from goal but he put just too much on it and the ball went over the top of the target.
Forres pulled back a consolation goal 2 minutes from full-time. Lee Fraser broke free and ran into the box. More came and narrowed the angle but Fraser chipped him putting just enough on it to cross the line despite a last ditch attempt by Alan Farquhar to keep it out.
3 - 1
Academy ran down the clock and referee Billy Baxter blew for full time, allowing all concerned to go and get thawed out.
Full Time - Wick Academy 3 - Forres Mechanics 1
The win retains Academy's 2 point lead at the top of the table. The 3 points also clocked up Academy's highest ever points total since we joined the league, surpassing last year's total of 55 with 9 games still to play. An away tie to Clachnacuddin on Wednesday night follows in what should be yet another cracker.
Match report written by John Briskham
|James More (GK)||24||5||-||113||-|
|Shaun Sinclair (sub)||-||14||-||195||-|
|Bryan McKiddie (sub)||-||12||1||164||6|
|James Pickles (sub)||22||26||2||26||2|