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Turriff United 3 – 2 Locos

Breedon Highland League

The year ended in disappointing fashion as Locos slumped to defeat at Turriff United. After taking an early lead the Railwaymen found themselves chasing the game and, despite having a man advantage in the closing stages, were unable to salvage a point.

Richie Hastings handed a first start to young Taylor Mason who would have been hoping to emulate teammate Blair Smith who scored on his debut at this ground earlier in the month. The evening started promisingly with Locos making the early running and taking the lead after 7 minutes. A smart free kick routine released Robert Ward in the area and his low cross from the left was tapped home by Garry Wood.

Locos went looking for a second, delivering a string of dangerous balls into the box but were missing the clinical edge. The game was almost 20 minutes old when Andy Reid was first called into action, saving a low Callan Gray effort comfortably.

Thirty seconds later though, he was picking the ball out of the net after a fine, rasping Owen Kinsella strike dipped under the bar from 25 yards.

Locos had opportunities to retake the lead immediately as David Dey saved well from Wood, Calum Dingwall’s free kick was deflected over off the wall and Smith fired over from the edge of the box.

Aaron Reid then sliced a presentable chance wide for the hosts and Kyle Gordon drove over from the right hand side of the box before they took the lead 6 minutes from the break, Callan Gray firing left footed beyond Reid. The Locos keeper had to be alert to deny the same player a few minutes later, tipping his effort over the bar.

The first half had been played at a fairly frenetic pace and it would have come as no surprise to anyone inside The Haughs that there were more goals after the break. First to threaten were Locos after a corner was only half cleared. Logan Johnstone sensed an opportunity as the ball was played back into the box but he had to stretch to reach the ball and could only poke over the bar.

Andy Reid had to react sharply to keep out a deflected shot and Aaron Reid then fired over. The Aberdeen-bound striker did get on the scoresheet in his final game though, tapping home at the far post after a break down the right.

With a little over 20 minutes remaining, that goal ultimately sealed the points for United but it wasn’t the end of the action. A few minutes later Keir Smith, who had been walking a fine line with the referee all game, received a red card for recklessly halting Mark Souter’s forward run.

That gave Locos a glimmer of hope, although the next goal nearly went Turriff’s way as Reid again pulled off an excellent stop, this time from Murray Cormack.

After Souter’s effort from distance was dealt with comfortably by Dey, Locos got back to within a goal with time running out as Greg Mitchell’s shot went just inside the post courtesy of a deflection. Locos huffed and puffed but couldn’t find the leveller that would have been harsh on the hosts.

The frustration was evident at the final whistle but two home games to start the new year provide an opportunity to bounce back.

Turriff United: Day, Kinsella, Cheyne, Foster, Chalmers, K Smith, Gordon (McKeown), Cormack, Reid (R Clark), E Clark (McKenzie), Gray Unused Subs: E Smith, Livingstone, Thompson, Findlay

Locos: A Reid, T Reid, Mitchell, Dingwall, Souter, Johnstone, Ward, Wood, Mason (Robertson), Michie (Thain), Smith (Alberts) Unused Subs: Duncan, Thompson, Petermann, Farquhar