Fraserburgh take on Deveronvale

Deveronvale v Fraserburgh

Press & Journal Scottish Highland Football League

Saturday March 9

Fraserburgh failed to make it three Highland League wins in a row as they suffered a last minute defeat at the hands of Deveronvale in a match of few chances. Both sets of supporters will be hoping for more excitement as the pair lock horns next Saturday at Banff in the Highland League Cup.

The Broch made two changes to the team that dismantled Lossiemouth 4-0 earlier in the week with Peter Alexander Bruce replacing Zak Conway in attack and Jonathan Dunbar coming in for the unavailable Paul Leask in goal.

The visitors were first to show attacking intent in the fourth minute when Willie West found P-A Bruce at the edge of the box but the on-loan striker couldn’t keep his feet and the chance was gone. Five minutes later Deveronvale had the ball in the net when Martin Charlesworth nodded the ball into the net from Robert Morrice’s cross but the striker was flagged for offside.

The Broch took the lead a minute later. Mark Cowie chipped a ball to the back post where Courtney Cooper met it and his looping header from 10 yards went over Darren McConnachie and dropped into the net.

Neither side were able to get into any passing rhythm as the half wore on but the next chance fell to the home side on twenty two minutes when Michele Lombardi’s cross was volleyed towards goal by Robert Morrice but Russell McBride was on hand to snuff out the danger and chest the ball down to Jonathan Dunbar in the Fraserburgh goal.

Six minutes before the break Willie West picked the ball up in midfield and drove towards the Vale penalty area before crossing the ball to Mark Cowie who laid the ball back perfectly to Courtney Cooper but the midfielder’s tame shot was straight at the home goalkeeper.

The home side’s best effort of the first half came with only three minutes to the break when Graeme Watt’s jinking run ended with his cross flying wide from the head of Martin Charlesworth. A minute later Courtney Cooper fired in a free kick which Darren McConnachie held safely.

Half-Time: Deveronvale 0-1 Fraserburgh

Scott Barbour created the Broch’s first chance of the second half with a weaving run and cross which picked out Courtney Cooper at the back post but he failed to make contact with the ball. Ryan Christie was next to go close for the visitors when he headed a Graham Johnston corner just wide on 55 minutes.

The Broch almost made it 2-0 on 60 minutes when Graham Johnston’s free kick flew just over the bar after Scott Fraser had upended P-A Bruce.

Deveronvale equalised on 68 minutes with a touch of fortune. Colin Charlesworth picked the ball up wide on the right and the winger’s cross sailed over Jonathan Dunbar’s head and into the net to level the score.

There were appeals for a penalty by the visitors four minutes later when Scott Barbour bore down on goal and seemed to be tugged back by Scott Fraser as his shot went into the sidenetting but referee Caryl Potten waved aside the Broch’s protests.

Fraserburgh were harbouring a sense of injustice now but they continued to press for a goal and should have regained the lead on 76 minutes when first P-A Bruce shot straight at the keeper after good build up play by Scott Barbour and Willie West with Barbour’s effort from the rebound blocked for a corner.

Two minutes later the Broch went close again after a great passing move involving Courtney Cooper, John Chalmers and Graham Johnston saw the ball find its way to Willie West but his shot just crept wide.

It seemed only a matter of time before the visitor’s pressure paid off and further efforts by Graham Johnston and Scott Barbour failed to find the target, then with only a minute remaining a poor clearance saw Craig Morrison pick the ball up just outside the box on the right and his low cross was hammered into the next by the onrushing Craig Cowie from six yards for a winner that the home side scarcely deserved.

Full-Time: Deveronvale 2-1 Fraserburgh

Deveronvale: Darren McConnachie, Kyle Rae, Kevin Adams, Tom Hutchinson, Scott Fraser, Craig Cowie, Michele Lombardi (Colin Charlesworth 46), John Urquhart, Martin Charlesworth (Kris Duncan 81), Graeme Watt, Robert Morrice (Craig Morrison 64) Unused Subs: Connor Rennie & Graeme Rodger.

Fraserburgh: Jonathan Dunbar, Marc Dickson (Bryan Hay 67), Russell McBride, Ryan Christie, Peter Bruce (Zak Conway 86), Willie West, Scott Barbour, Mark Cowie (Graham Johnston 55), Ryan Cowie, John Chalmers, Courtney Cooper.

Unused Subs: Roy Noble & Steven Main.

Referee: Caryl Potten