There was little doubt that Inverurie Locos v Brora was the game of the day in the SHFL with last season’s top two going head to head knowing that at least one of them had to lose their 100 per cent league record.
For most this was a real test of whether or not anyone was going to be able to halt the Brora juggernaut this term and by half time the verdict was already in.
One team had their influential captain present, the other hadn’t. Neil McLean failed a fitness test on his hamstring but Steven Mackay was in his usual place and tested Andy Reid in the first minute with a low shot.
Brora took the lead in the 8th minute through Zander SUTHERLAND when he sneaked away from Ross Anderson, swivelled and fired a right footed shot in off the left hand post of Andy Reid. At the other end midweek man of the match Gordon Forsyth looked for another goal as he met a David Ross free kick with his head but the effort went over the crossbar
The writing looked well and truly on the wall for the league leaders when the title holders added a second midway through the half. Andy Reid tried to get distance on a clearance but the ball spun up in the air. When it came down it was laid left to Andrew GREIG. He cut inside stand in right back John Maitland looked up and let fly with an unstoppable left foot effort just off the ground into Andy Reid’s left hand corner.
The Inverurie side were not looking comfortable at the back but their lead up play was promising and the impressive Ross sent a slide rule pass through to Martin Bavidge who volleyed over the crossbar. Then Scott Houston had to be clever on the goal line, kicking away after Ross Anderson rose well to meet the Ross corner from the right.
Four minutes from half time it was 3-0. Morrison’s through ball went under the foot of Dean Donaldson and Zander Sutherland latched on to the ball, squared it across the goal for Steven MACKAY to apply a simple finish from eight yards out to put the Cattachs well in the driving seat.
Into the second half Steven Mackay broke in behind the defence on a ball through inside right channel. He chipped the ball over Andy Reid, although it came back off the crossbar Zander SUTHERLAND reacted quicker than the defence and he slammed the ball into the net from 12 yards out to make it 4-0 in the 53rd minute.
Five minutes later it was five nil with Ross TOKELY bulleting a header home from a Zander Sutherland in swinging free kick. With still over half an hour to go it looked as though Davie Kirkwoods side may have looked to make it 30 scored and 0 conceded from their first five games but the focus seemed to be on racking up yet another clean sheet with the game already won.
Late on Martin Bavidge thrice got clear on the right side but his hard hit crosses found no takers and the nearest to a consolation was when the impressive David Ross cut in from the left and forced Joe Malin to block with his legs
For the Red and Blacks their day had already been racked by failed late fitness tests . It was capped by Mark Souter being stretchered off with a broken ankle at the start of the second half, after a clumsy challenge by Martin MacLean. His replacement Greg Mitchell lasted only quarter of an hour before he had to be replaced and Neil Gauld also came off injured. All-in-all a day to forget
Inverurie Locos: Reid, Maitland, Forsyth, Souter (Mitchell 49, Still 64), Anderson, Broadhurst, David Ross, Hunter, Gauld (Young 60), Bavidge, Donaldson
Subs: Keir, Mathieson
Brora Rangers: Malin, Houston, Tokely, Williamson (D Mackay 83), Munro, M Maclean (J Mackay 60), Morrison, Gillespie, Sutherland, S Mackay (C Maclean 79), Greig.
Subs: Ross, Allan.
Referee: M Northcroft