Second half goals from Greg Mitchell and Robert Ward secured successive home wins for Locos after a forgettable opening 45 minutes. The visitors had the better of what chances did come in the first half and will be wondering what might have been had they been able to take advantage.
The first of those opportunities came after five minutes as Liam Duncan found himself in space on the edge of the penalty area and hit a low shot that Andy Reid did well to turn around the post.
Garry Wood went close, lofting a shot narrowly wide with the keeper Craig Reid stranded before Locos came even closer to opening the scoring. It’s become unfashionable to have defenders on the post when defending a corner but Keith were grateful that they bucked the trend when Fergus Alberts’ header was blocked on the line. Andy Reid was tested again shortly before half time when a deep cross found Connor Killoh who hit a fierce first time shot that the big keeper diverted over the bar.
With no goals, and little quality in the final third, Richie Hastings made changes at the break with Mitchell and Logan Johnstone deployed as wing backs. The switch proved fruitful, but not before Andy Reid again kept Duncan out with another excellent save in the 55th minute.
Just a few minutes later, Locos took the lead with their best move of the game. The ball was worked to Johnstone on the left who fed the ball inside to Lloyd Robertson. His clever pass picked out Mitchell who finished with a first time shot, despite the best efforts of a lunging defender.
The goal visibly relaxed the home team, who began to take a grip on the game. Wood brought a save from Reid while Mark Souter was unable to work the keeper with a wayward shot following a typically mazy run up the park.
By now the visitors were struggling to make an impact in the final third and the points were sealed with a little over a quarter of an hour remaining. Reid will not want to remember the 5th of November as he appeared comfortably placed to deal with Ward’s tame shot only to somehow allow it to slip under his body and across the line.
Locos saw out the remaining minutes comfortably to take the very welcome victory. The points were merited on the second half showing but the Railwaymen had Andy Reid to thank for keeping the game goalless before they found their rhythm.
Next up is a 3rd visit of the season to Fraserburgh where Locos will be looking for a repeat of their league victory in the Highland League Cup.
Locos: A Reid, T Reid, Mitchell, Dingwall, Souter, Johnstone, Ward, Alberts (Michie), Wood, Petermann (Gill), Robertson (Thain) Unused Subs: Meres, Farquhar
Keith: C Reid, Killoh, Grant, Thomas, Coull, Yeats, Andrews (Wilson), Browne, Mooney (Ironside), Yunis, Duncan (Tough) Unused Sub: Irvine