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Locos 2 – 1 Aberdeen

Evening Express Aberdeenshire Cup

Locos came through a tight tie against an Aberdeen development side to reach the Evening Express Aberdeenshire Cup Final next month. Myles Gaffney swiftly restored parity after Alfie Bavidge had put the Dons ahead in the first half. Nathan Meres completed the turnaround after the break to set up a showdown with Buckie Thistle.

Dean Donaldson was absent from the dugout but the large crowd inside Harlaw Park saw a cagey opening 20 minutes before the young Dons team began to threaten down the flanks. A couple of dangerous balls across the box had gone unrewarded before Bavidge opened the scoring on the half hour. Goalkeeper Tom Ritchie fed Adam Emslie who in turn picked out Bavidge in the area. He touched the ball past Paul Coutts before firing home.

Aberdeen had an immediate opportunity to double their lead following good play between Alfie Stewart and Bavidge. The latter’s low cross was only cleared as far as Brendan Hamilton who took aim from outside the box but could only drive wide.

Locos levelled just a few minutes later. Meres played in Jay Halliday who was forced wide. He got a shot away though, that struck the base of the upright, falling nicely for Gaffney who took a touch before slotting home. Locos finished the half strongly. Gaffney, who was full of running all night, closed down a Ritchie clearance but was beaten to the loose ball by Finlay Murray. Shortly before the break, Cole Anderson tried his luck from 20 yards but curled his effort over the bar.

The Railwaymen started the second half on the front foot. Gaffney stung the palms of Ritchie shortly before the hour mark but less than a minute later, Locos took the lead. Meres took advantage of a defensive slip before creating a bit of space and firing low past Ritchie and into the corner. Meres was having an excellent game and had an opportunity to score a second but couldn’t quite connect cleanly from ten yards and Ritchie was able to gather comfortably. He then came close to providing an assist with a delightful back heel to put Gaffney through on goal. The striker poked the ball past Ritchie but just wide of the post.

The visitors tried to exert some pressure in the latter stages as they looked to earn themselves a penalty shoot out but the closest they came was a Bavidge header in the final minute of normal time that Ellis gratefully grasped.

Details of the final have yet to be confirmed but it is a game that Locos will look forward to with confidence after another impressive performance. Following an even first half, the Railwaymen took the game to their opponents after the break and fully deserved their victory.

Inverurie Loco Works

1Zack Ellis
2Mark Souter
3Thomas Reid
4Jay Halliday 20
5Paul Coutts
6Cole Anderson
7Lloyd Robertson
8Milosz Ochmanski
9Nathan Meres 58'
10Myles Gaffney 18 36'
11Logan Johnstone
14Callum Duncan
15Blair Smith
17Sam Robertson
18Aidan Wilson 10
19Anton Chauvin
20Calum Dingwall 4
23Blessing Oluyemi

Aberdeen FC

25Tom Ritchie
2Kai Watson 17
3Brendan Hamilton
4Finlay Murray
5Blair McKenzie
6Findlay Marshall
7Adam Emslie
8Dylan Lobban 12
9Alfie Bavidge 30'
10Alfie Stewart
11Ryan Duncan
12Fletcher Boyd 8
14Fraser Mackie
15Cameron Wilson
16Ellis Clark
17Aaron Reid 2
18Timothy Akindileni
1Rodrigo Vitols