BRORA Rangers3 Strathspey Thistle0
BRORA Rangers collected all three points with a very frustrating but easily comfortable victory against Strathspey Thistle at Dudgeon Park on Saturday.
Manager Ross Tokely made five changes to the starting line-up from that which went down 1-0 at Huntly midweek.
Second-half goals from Macleod, Houston and Graham secured the win after a frustrating first half which saw numerous chances squandered.
Brora surged forward from the off and should have been ahead within the first minute, but Kyle Macleod surprisingly spurned a golden opportunity.
Some lovely passing between Greig, Nicolson, Macleod and Graham set up Gunn with a scoring opportunity but his effort was deflected away for a corner. From the resultant corner kick, Kyle Macleod fired over the bar from five yards.
With only 10 minutes on the clock, Ally MacDonald shot narrowly over the bar from 20 yards with Thistle keeper MacCallum well beaten.
Macleod, Gunn and Houston all went close and a 50-yard cross field pass from Morrison only just failed to make Greig, but instead ran out harmlessly.
Brora Manager Tokely, clearly frustrated with events, hooked off Greig, replacing him with Sutherland who very nearly scored with his first touch, but his finish was weak and poor.
The first half came to end, but not before Macleod and Nicolson again tested the opposition goalkeeper who was certainly earning his corn.
Within a minute of the restart, Ally MacDonald blasted over as Brora signalled their intent to press forward for the opener. Soon after, both Gunn who was looking sharp, and Macleod again went close with shots.
Brora at last deservedly broke the deadlock on 59 minutes when Nicolson, who was playing far more forward, saw his shot well saved by the goalkeeper but Kyle Macleod was on hand to break the deadlock.
Within two minutes Macleod was in the thick of things again, this time seeing his shot cleared off the line by Andrew Hay.
Paul Brindle and Craig Campbell came on, replacing, Gunn and Macleod. Campbell, in particular, made his presence immediately felt in assisting Brora double their lead on 69 minutes when Scott Houston scored from close range, with his header crossing the line off the post. Referee Alex Shepherd was right on the spot and immediately gave the goal, even though the ball had bounced back into play.
Strathspey very nearly pulled a goal back when Brora’s on-loan keeper, Daniel Hoban, got caught outside his area, and Craig MacMillan saw his well-positioned speculative lob headed off the line by Jamie Duff, who was wise to the potential threat and was guarding the goal.
Brora completed their scoring in 88 minutes when the industrious Scott Graham was on hand to drive home their third after some excellent passing between Morrison and Campbell.
Brora Rangers: Hoban 6, Houston 6, MacDonald 6, Williamson 7, Duff 7, Morrison 6, Graham 6, Macleod 6, Gunn 6, Nicolson 7 Greig 5. Subs: Sutherland 6, Brindle 5, Campbell 6 (not used Ross, Maclean, Mackay, Counsell).
Referee: A Shepherd 7, Caution: Gunn.