2 - 5
2 - 5
Scottish Qualifying Cup (1st Round)
David MacRae (39)
Johnny Seaton (75)
Michael Stephen (?)
Ian Murray (33)
Derek Milne (45)
Michael Stephen (77)
Michael Stephen (90)
Peter Lynch for Neal Sinclair (59)
John MacAskill for Johnny Seaton (84)
Scott Mackie for Neil Main (64)
Mark Cowie for Gavin Wemyss (75)
Neil McLaren for Russell McBride (85)
||Billy Gordon (75)|
Nairn County saw their Scottish Cup qualification aspirations ended at the first round stage for the third year running as they were defeated by Fraserburgh for the second week in a row, this time at Station Park.
Gaffer Les Fridge handed a start to Johnny Seaton instead of the on-holiday Willie Barron while Mark Smith started his second match for the club in favour of John MacAskill, who dropped down to the bench. Steven Edwards, who missed the last two games due to work committments, came straight back into the starting line-up for Colin Macleod, who dropped out completely, along with Brian Macleod, who saw his place occupied by Neal Sinclair. Winger Peter Lynch was only deemed fit enough to make the bench.
County made the better start of the two sides and should really have been ahead in the opening three minutes when Scott Kellacher squared the ball for Johnny Seaton who smacked an effort from 12 yards that came crashing off of the underside of the crossbar before being cleared to safety.
But it was the visitors who got their noses in front when a through ball from Russell McBride sprung the Nairn offside trap allowing Michael Stephen to race through on goal before clipping past the outrushing Michael Rae to pick up where he left off after last weeks five goals against Nairn.
The Highland League Player of the Year almost had his second of the day after 21 minutes but his drive from 20 yards was well held by Rae.
Iain Brooks had Nairn's next effort on goal but he could only fire over at the front post after getting on the end of a Farquhar corner from the left.
The Broch doubled their advantage after 33 minutes when Steven Main burst down the left wing before reaching the bye-line and playing a ball across the face of goal leaving Ian Murray with the simplest of finishes at the back post.
David MacRae looked to snatch one back for Nairn when he headed towards the bottom corner from 10 yards but Billy Gordon did well to get down low to his right and claw the effort away.
County did half the deficit though in the 39th minute when Kellacher cut in from the left before squaring the ball for the onrushing MacRae to drill home first time from 15 yards to get Nairn back in the reckoning.
But right on the stroke of half time, Fraserburgh re-established their two goal advantage when a poor Steven Edwards headed clearance fell to the unmarked Derek Milne to volley an unstoppable shot from 25 yards straight into Michael Rae's top right hand corner.
Milne almost got his second of the day when he attempted to repeat the feat only to see the volley flash just past the post.
Peter Lynch then made his long awaited Nairn debut in place of Neal Sinclair and almost made an immediate impact when he lifted the ball over Billy Gordon's head only to see the effort chalked off for offside.
Nairn were then dealt a hammer blow when Steven Edwards, who had already collected a yellow card earlier in the match, lunged in with a late challenge before needlessly lashing out at the fallen Fraserburgh player ensuring there was only going to be one outcome when he was summoned by the referee.
But, if anything, this saw Nairn up their game and they clawed a goal back with 15 minutes left for play. David MacRae rounded Broch shotstopper Billy Gordon before being cleaned out by the veteran custodian resulting in a spot-kick being awarded and only a yellow card given to the visiting keeper despite his last man challenge.
Kellacher stepped up to see his effort from 12 yards saved before Johnny Seaton followed in to score the rebound and hand Nairn a lifeline.
But two goals in the last 13 minutes from Michael Stephen ended things. Firstly, he drilled home past Rae from the edge of the box before powerfully heading a Murray cross from the right past the Nairn shotstopper to complete his hat-trick and make it eight goals from two games against County in as many weeks.
|Michael Rae (GK)||-||4||-||60||-|
|Peter Lynch (sub)||-||1||-||1||-|
|John MacAskill (sub)||-||4||-||4||-|
No league table has been added for this season.