Honours even at Harlaw

Ross Anderson  heads home Locos' opener.
Ross Anderson heads home Locos' opener.

Inverurie Locos and Deveronvale shared four goals in a hard-fought encounter at Harlaw Park on Saturday.

The match survived a late pitch inspection thanks to a hard-working team of volunteers.

Deveronvale made the dream start when they went ahead in the 11th minute through the tenacious Martin Charlesworth.

With the Locos defence failing to clear a low Alexander Jack ball into the box which went on to strike the far post, Charlesworth found himself in the perfect position to cushion the rebound past Errol Watson from six yards.

Locos provided a quick response as Andy Hunter saw his curling 20-yard free kick tipped over the bar by Grant Pennet, however, they were unable to sustain the pressure as the match evolved into a midfield battle between the two sides.

As the half-hour mark approached, the home side found themselves back on terms as Neil McLean provided the perfect corner to pick out Ross Anderson at the front post, with the defender rising above the Vale defenders to knock the ball past Pennet.

With half-time quickly approaching, Deveronvale produced the perfect counter attack to take the lead into the break as Charlesworth grabbed his second of the game.

Bradly Manson provided the low ball from midfield which split the Locos defence, allowing Charlesworth to take on Watson one-on-one before calmly slotting past the oncoming keeper.

Sensing the match was beginning to slip away from them, Inverurie brought on Colin Charlesworth to restructure their midfield.

The impact may not have been instant, but the refreshed strategy saw Inverurie once again tie the game with half an hour to go.

David Ross provided the inch perfect cross to find Martin Laing lurking at the back post, ande he directed his header into the ground, giving Pennet no chance to palm the ball away.

The home fans then endured a frustrating remainder to the half as Locos continued to create chances, but failed to execute them.

Ross Anderson came close to an almost identical recreation of his earlier goal as he once again got his head into a Neil McLean corner, only to see Pennet cushion the ball between his legs.

Charlesworth, Laing and Hunter all came close to giving Locos the lead after excellent build-up moves, only to see their shots either hit the near post or skim just wide of goal.

With the game still in the balance, Deveronvale came agonisingly close to claiming the three points in the final minutes as Sean Keith fired his free kick towards the back post towards Nathan Ross, only to see the substitute’s back post header across goal somehow miss the target and drift wide of the far post.