North West Sutherland representatives Helmsdale United, Brora Wanderers and Lochinver managed to record wins today, as they each advanced to the second round of the Gow’s of Lybster Highland Amateur Cup.
Away to Keiss, Helmsdale United advanced with a comprehensive 4-1 victory. Paul Gordon scored the opener in the 3rd minuted for United before Kevin Cairns extended their lead on the quarter hour mark. His namesake Billy made it 3-0 on 34 minutes and ten minutes later the same player bagged a brace to give Helmsdale an insurmountable first half advantage. There was to be no more scoring from United in the second half, but Keiss did pull a goal back with 15 minutes remaining.
At Halkirk, Brora Wanderers secured their place in the next round with an impressive 3-1 win. Mike Maclean opened the scoring after ten minutes with a good goal before Aaron Scott doubled their lead early in the second half. Scott was on the scoresheet again with ten minutes remaining with the goal of the game. A late injury to Kyle Sutherland saw Brora reduced to ten men having used all subs and late on, Halkirk reduced the deficit by scoring from the penalty spot.
Inver had no luck in Lybster, suffering heavily on the wrong end of a 9-3 defeat. A Jonah Martens double and hat-tricks for both Bobby Gunn and Gary Weir killed off the debutants’ chances, but they did net three in reply. Jordan Hailes scored in the first half from the penalty spot, before Jack Corbett scored with a glancing header with the score 6-2 at the interval. James Beeston added Inver’s third in the second half with a left footed curling effort into the top corner.
Lochinver recorded an impressive win away to Thurso Acks. The all-important goal arrived in the second half of the game on 75 minutes when Ben Bruce hit the back of the net in a game the West Sutherland side thoroughly deserved to win.
It was to be another first round exit for Tain Thistle though, losing 3-1 to Staxigoe United. During an evenly contested first half both keepers were called into action, and on twenty minutes Thistle thought they had broken the deadlock when the ball appeared to have crossed the line – but referee Eric Robertson waved play on. Staxigoe eventually opened the scoring with 10 minutes of the half left through Martin Banks but within five minutes Darran Goller had equalised. Capitulation followed in the second period as Staxigoe netted twice in the final twenty minutes to put the game beyond the North West Sutherland champions. Staxigoe retook the lead via an unfortunate Paul Cowie own goal and the final goal to make it 3-1 was a second for Banks.
Cup holders Pentland United made easy work of Lairg Rovers at Ham Park. Three first half goals from Shaun Forbes, Innes Mackintosh and Sean Campbell had the Caithness side 3-0 up at half time against the ten men of Lairg, who had seen Luke Mackay dismissed midway through the first half. James Murray added a fourth after the break before Campbell doubled his tally to make it 5-0. With a minute left, Lairg did manage to notch a consolation through Lee Mackenzie.
Invergordon Social Club made the trip North to play Watten and despite a valiant effort, fell by 4 goals to 1. Two first half goals for the home side through Scott McAlpine and Darryl O’Sullivan had Watten 2-0 up after half an hour, but a Duncan Brown header pulled Invergordon back into the game shortly before the break. A set piece was their undoing on 59 minutes though as Shane Honeyman put his side 3-1 ahead. The final blow came on 71 minutes through Stuart Sinclair who headed home to round off a comfortable win in the end for Watten.
Full Highland Amateur Cup 1st Round results:
Castletown v Dornoch (Castletown via forfeit)
Halkirk 1 Brora Wanderers 3
John O’Groats 0 High Ormlie Hotspur 1
Keiss 1 Helmsdale United 4
Lybster 9 Inver 3
Pentland United 5 Lairg Rovers 1
Tain Thistle 1 Staxigoe United 3
Thurso Acks 0 Lochinver 1
Watten 4 Invergordon SC 1
Wick Thistle 1 Wick Groats 5
Avoch 3 Culloden Blacksmiths 0
Black Rock Rovers 4 Korrie 0 (played on Friday)
Culbokie 2 Loch Ness 3
Fortrose Union 4 Sleat & Strath 7
Innes CI 2 Kyleakin 4
IRN Security 2 North Kessock Hotel 4
Mallaig 2 Balloan Compass 4
Maryburgh 3 NMM Sams 2
Muir of Ord Rovers 1 Contin 5
NW Skye 0 Hill Rovers 2
Police 3 ICM Electrical 4
Uncle Bobs 0 Bellmac 16
Northern Isles Section
Barriers United 0 Kirkwall Thorfinn 6
Kirkwall Hotspur 2 Stromness Athletic 1
Lerwick Spurs 5 Scalloway 1
Rendall 10 Kirkwall Accies 0
Whitedale 9 Firth 0
Western Isles Section
Carloway 3 Back 3 (Carloway win 3-2 on pens)
Eriskay 0 Barra 3
Southend 1 Point 2
Stornoway Athletic 3 Benbecula 0
Stornoway United 2 Ness 4
Updated second round matches as below. Ties to be played on June 8th.
Carloway v Whitedale
Loch Ness v North Kessock Hotel
Stornoway Athletic v Kyleakin
Rendall v Lybster
Sleath & Strath v Balloan Campus
Lerwick Spurs v Kirkwall Hotspur
Pentland United v High Ormlie Hotspur
Staxigoe United v Bellmac
Helmsdale United v Ness
Barra v Wick Groats
Brora Wanderers v Kirkwall Thorfinn
Hill Rovers v Lochinver
Avoch v Contin
Blackrock Rovers v Maryburgh
Castletown v ICM Electrical
Point v Watten