Fraserburgh ride luck to take win
Fraserburgh managed to hold on to claim all three points, but only by the skin of their teeth as Fort William created a wonderful chance to equalise with just three minutes remaining.
The visitors had successfully marshalled Fraserburgh for the duration of the first-half and withheld heavy pressure on their goal, but Graham Johnston’s header was the difference just eight minutes after the break.
Zack Conway was making some neat runs at the Fort defence, and he cut inside before slipping his shot wide on five minutes.
Six minutes later, Bob Morrice flighted in a cross-cum-shot which bounced off the top of the crossbar leaving Robbie Donaldson deceived, with the ball eventually dropping to safety.
There was a growing level of frustration sweeping the Fraserburgh ranks thanks to Fort’s resilience, which was leading to slackness in the end product.
With 36 minutes gone, the Broch had a great chance to open the scoring when Morrice’s in-swinging corner found Willie West with a free header at the far post, but he couldn’t get the right connection on the ball and it drifted wide.
With half-time approaching, the Lochaber side had their goalkeeper to thank for keeping the scores level going into the break. Firstly a teasing delivery from the right by Morrice found Conway, and he drilled the ball towards the near post but Donaldson got a strong pair of hands behind it to superbly turn it away. Minutes later a free-kick awarded on the edge of the box for a foul by Michael Gillespie presented Johnston with an opportunity to try his luck, and he drilled the ball low towards Donaldson’s bottom left but the on-loan Clach keeper diverted it round the post.
With three minutes of the second-half gone, Donaldson picked up an Andy MacLean pass-back, the result of which an indirect free-kick 6 yards out for Fraserburgh and a great chance to take the lead.
Fort assembled a wall of players stationed on the goal-line, before Hale rolled it into the path of Dean Cowie, but he blasted the ball over.
Fraserburgh got the goal which the balance of scoring chances merited, yet it still seemed harsh on Fort William who had battled so hard. Conway was released down the left by a diagonal ball, he ghosted into the box and crossed for Graham Johnston who nodded the ball over the advancing Donaldson from eight yards.
Conway had another fine chance for the hosts on 71 minutes, following great work from Scott Barbour.
The youngster showed immense determination to shake off Lewis Campbell, before driving at goal with fierce intent and squaring for Conway. The finish was skewed wide from the winger, and it was a disappointing end following such great play from Barbour.
At the other end, Fort came agonisingly close to snatching an equaliser. A ball from midfield split the central defenders and put substitute Scott Hunter through on goal, but he could only find the side-netting.
Next up for the Broch is a trip to Inverurie. The supporters club will be running a bus to Inverurie on Saturday which will leave the harbour office at 11:45am.