- Created: Saturday, 08 February 2014 17:58
- Published: Saturday, 08 February 2014 17:58
Buckie Thistle, for the only possible time this season, have taken the maximum six points from two fixtures against a side in the bottom four.
Defeat to Rothes and Lossie, and draws against Fort William have, to an extent, been made up for after a 3-0 win added to their victory earlier on in the season in the initial fixture in Grantown.
Pre-match, the sides displayed their Thistle connection as Buckie captain Lewis MacKinnon delivered a silver dish as a memento to the visitors to commemorate their fifth season in the Highland League.
But the Grantown side looked in no mood to thank their hosts, surging forward in the opening 60 sixty seconds. Josh Peters gained control of the ball on the edge of the 18 yard box, but sliced his effort wide, unaware of the time he had at his disposal.
With the wind strong and the rain battering, it was never going to be a day where the teams got the ball down and played. Buckie's first attempt at passing the ball on the ground, however, resulted in their first goal.
With assistant manager Kevin Small's words ringing in his ears: "Get that bloody ball down," Andy Low slipped in Liam Baxter. Baxter rounded 'keeper Steven Martin but the uncontrolled arm of Martin took the striker down.
With Baxter in fact running away from goal, match referee Graham Fraser felt the challenge didn't warrant entry in his book and so Aaron Conway stepped up and calmly dispatched the ball into the bottom corner.
Buckie were, arguably, in control of the opening stages and Andy Low fired a shot straight at Martin after a neat turn in the box which the keeper saved well with his legs. The rebound fell to Donnie Munro who took it first time but lacked composure, striking it over.
Aaron Conway, renowned for his ball striking ability, missed the target when he attempted to add a second after 28 minutes from range. The ball stroking the paint on the post on its way wide.
Buckie were almost punished for some lethargy as half-time approached. Andy Low picked out Gary Kerr, on the opposite team, amongst a flurry of green and white shirt. Kerr was tripped as he went on run which wasn't mazy in description, but more appeared as though he had gotten lost in a maze and Mark McKernie lashed the freekick straight at Kevin Main, Main punching it away such was its ferocity, as Strathspey's best attempt on goal in the opening forty-five disappeared.
Buckie were almost the creators for their own downfall again in the second half. Chris Angus attempted to head it back to Kevin Main but his header was off target and had Josh Peters been aware, may have made more of the open goal than poke wide.
The miss was to prove pivotal just a minute later. Aaron Conway picked up the ball around the half-way line, driving forward before placing the ball into the bottom corner from 18 yards.
Buckie wrapped up the three points with their third goal. Conway's deep cross met by Neil Davidson who would have struggled to miss from the whole 3 yards.
Strathspey almost grabbed a consolation in the final minute, but Kevin Main showed no signs of rustiness after an easy afternoon, stretching to tip wide Ronnie Jones curling effort from 16 yards.
Full-time: Buckie Thistle 3-0 Strathspey Thistle
Reporter: Benjy Palmer