STONEHAVEN ATHLETIC 5
UNIVERSITY COLTS 1
Athletic made only one enforced change to the starting line-up after the comfortable win against Mintlaw with Holtes replacing Ross. McKenzie was also absent after a recent leg break.
It was the visitors who took control in the early stages. From a corner, Duncan was in the right place to clear a header of the line with Middleton beaten.
After 10 minutes, the pressure eventually paid off when the visitors took the lead. Bowron was left one on one with an attacker and rather than laying the ball back to Middleton, he tried to clear his lines only to be dispossessed. The ball was laid into the path of a team mate who stroked the ball past the home keeper.
The Stoney side failed to heed the warnings and Middleton was then called into action when he forced to tip an effort over the bar before colliding with the upright.
Eventually, the home side grabbed a foothold in the game and with 30 minutes on the clock equalised. Duncan was taken down on the right and Elliott clipped the resultant free-kick into the box for Neish to head home.Three minutes later a free-kick was awarded in an identical position. This time Elliott squared the ball inside for Metelski to rifle an effort from 25 yards that crashed off the underside of the bar.
Athletic began the second half in determined mood and began to exert pressure on the visitor’s goal. Lawson replaced Holtes and this brought some much needed composure to the midfield.
The home side took the lead when Reid prodded the ball home following a goalmouth scramble.
It was now one-way traffic towards the visitors goal and it wasn’t long before the lead was extended. Substitute Nicoll clipped a great ball down the left for Neish to run onto and fire a great finish past the keeper.
It was not long before Neish was to claim his hat-trick when after a great flowing move man-of –the-match Reid laid the ball off to him to slot home.
Elliott then got in on the act when he ran onto a through ball to stroke the ball home from the edge of the area.
This was another great effort after a sluggish start and Athletic have now climbed to fourth in the table. The most pleasing aspect is that in the last 3 league games, Atheltic have scored 16 and only conceded 2. With competition for places all over the pitch, this is the kind of effort that is required if Athletic are continue with their push for promotion.
Atheltic: Miiddleton; Holtes, Bowron, MacLeod; Duncan, Elliott, Metelski, Irvine; Reid; Fraser, Neish. Subs; Cordiner, Nicoll, Lawson, Coutts & J Robb.