2 - 2
Dachi Khutsishvilli (4)
Liam Baxter (62)
Sam Mackay (21)
David Allan (82)
Scott H. Moore
Brandon G. Hutcheson
Steven Fraser Scott H. Moore (72)
Fraser Forbes for Aaron McLellan (82)
Alan Hughes for James McLean (71)
|Scott Moore (35)||None.|
George Robertson (Referee)
Forres welcomed Academy as their 2016 first footers and the sides shared the spoils in a 2-2 draw. Academy twice came behind in an action-packed encounter.
The home side got off to a great start opening the scoring after only four minutes. The ball was worked up to Lee Fraser on the edge of the Academy box. He squared it to Dachi Khutsishvilli and from 16 yards out he fired home.
1 - 0
Two minutes later Academy created their first chance of the game. Sam Mackay started the move off up the right side of the box. He laid it to Michael Steven who in turn teed up James Pickles but his 20 yard shot was deflected wide for a corner.
Lee Fraser launched another Forres attack knocking the ball wide to Khutsishvilli who got to the right by-line and delivered into the box for Liam Baxter to meet it first time on the half-volley but he couldn't keep the shot down and it sailed over the crossbar.
On the quarter hour Academy had a great chance to equalize. Sam Mackay took a free kick out on the right. The Forres defence could only clear it as far as Gary Manson who lobed it back over the defence for Steven Anderson who went one-on-one with keeper Stuart Knight who parried away Anderson's shot.
On 21 minutes Academy squared the scores. A throw-in on the right was played to Michael Steven and he laid it off to Sam Mackay who from 30 yards out drove a shot that dipped under the crossbar and into the net.
1 - 1
Khutsishvilli picked the ball up deep in the Forres half and drove forward with ball at feet. He got to the edge of the Academy box before teeing up Liam Fraser but he miskicked the ball and it squirmed well wide of the target.
Manson then played a neat one-two with Davie Allan before Manson had a shot which was blocked by Knight. Richard Macadie followed in to pick up the loose ball but Knight again made the block to turn the ball for a corner.
Both keepers were earning their crust as up the other end of the park McCarthy did well to turn a Baxter 20 yard drive around the post.
Half Time - Forres Mechanics 1 - Wick Academy 1
In the first real opportunity of the second half Academy had the chance to take the lead. Sam Mackay delivered a free kick from the left touch-line into the box. Steven Anderson took it down on his thigh, turned but hooked the ball just over the crossbar.
Two minutes later Forres regained the lead. A scramble in the Academy box saw the ball fall to Baxter 10 yards out. McCarthy saved his shot with his feet and it bounced back off Baxter and ended up in the back of the net.
2 - 1
Baxter and Fraser linked up well which set up Fraser but his curling effort was just too high of the target.
On 76 minutes it was Academy's turn to come close. Sam Mackay took a quick free kick to Manson. He drove forward and crossed into the box. James Pickles rose highest but from 10 yards out he put his header over the bar.
The chances kept coming and next up was Anderson who was set up by Allan but Anderson's shot took a flick off a defender and went wide for a corner.
A minute later and the Academy once again squared the scores. Macadie fed the ball forward to Anderson who clipped it over the top of the Forres defence. Davie Allan ran onto it and kept his composure to slot home into the bottom left hand corner.
2 - 2
In a nail-biting finish both sides had chances to win it. Khutsishvilli cut in from the right and slid the ball into the feet of Baxter but his shot was saved by McCarthy. Baxter followed in but Michael Steven covered back and made a goal-saving block.
Fraser then had a header that went just wide of target before McCarthy went air-born to save a Simon Allan free kick that looked destined for the top corner of the net.
In injury time Academy almost nicked the three points. They broke out of defence and Hughes played the ball into the feet of Allan. He switched it to Macadie who played it back to Hughes who set up Allan but his strike was turned wide for a corner by Knight.
Full Time - Forres Mechanics 2 - Wick Academy 2
Match report written by Luke Bunch
|Sean McCarthy (GK)||22||31||-||64||-|
|Alan Hughes (sub)||20||10||-||41||1|