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Inverurie Locos 2 Peterhead 1

Wed 23 Nov 2011

Inverurie Locos made life tough for Peterhead, but it was Jim McInally’s men who eventually won through to round four of the William Hill Scottish Cup, as the Blue Toon edged a six-goal thriller at Harlaw Park.

Strikes from Jamie Redman and Martin Bavidge seemed to have the game killed off after just 22 minutes, but Steven Park pulled one back for the hosts.

Callum Macdonald restored the two-goal advantage but Neil McLean hit back again for the home side who battled hard in a bid to level the scores, before Rory McAllister’s stunning free kick eventually killed off their hopes.

There was one change to the side that had drawn with Alloa last week, Bavidge returning to the starting eleven in place of Dennis Wyness after recovering from an ankle injury.

The Blue Toon were first out of the traps and Bryan Deasley sent an early shot wide of the target.

But goalkeeper Raymond Jellema spared his side’s blushes in the fifth minute as Locos co-manager Kenny Coull exchanged passes with Keith Thomson before the full-back saw his low shot turned round the post by the ex-Alloa custodian.

Deasley again hit wide before Peterhead took the lead in the 18th minute. Jamie Redman did the hard work, turning on Davie Donald’s pass and ghosting past three challenges before Thomson’s attempted clearance came back off Redman’s foot and found the back of the net.

And they were quick to double their advantage. Deasley took a short corner to Ryan Strachan and from the return pass the winger got into the area and cut back for McAllister who saw his shot blocked.

Dave Ross took a swing at it, but it was Bavidge who got the final touch, spinning quickly to fire home from close range.

If Peterhead thought they were home and dry, that notion was quickly removed as Steven Park rose to head home John Maitland’s corner at the back post just two minutes later, and it was game on again.

Jellema had to be at his best to turn away McLean’s effort ten minutes before the break as Locos hunted for a leveller, but Peterhead restored their two-goal advantage on the stroke of half-time.

The lively Deasley was again involved, his corner this time flicked on by Ross at the near post, and Macdonald rose highest to head home at the back post.

Again the Locos hit back, and again Peterhead were undone by a corner. Maitland was allowed to take a short kick to Craig Ross who crossed for Park. His header was punched away by Jellema, but fell nicely for McLean to lash home from 15 yards.

Once more the Highland League side took heart from their goal and they could have been level when Andy Reid’s free kick bounced all the way through to Neil Gauld, who saw his header flash inches wide of the post.

A minute later, Gauld’s free kick was only just wide of the other post as Locos took the game to their Third Division opponents, but they were to be hit with a cruel sucker punch.

McAllister won a free kick wide on the left and took it himself, unexpectedly curling a superb effort into the net from a tight angle.

That was to cement Peterhead’s place in the next round, but if Jim McInally is looking for his men to use this win as a building block towards improving their league form, then he will be disappointed that a replay between his side’s next two opponents, Elgin City and Queen’s Park, means the trip to Borough Briggs will now be postponed.

INVERURIE LOCOS: Andy Reid, Keith Thomson, Simon Scott, Scott Begg, Steven Park, Ryan Broadhurst, Craig Ross (Jamie Michie, 81), Neil McLean, Kenny Coull (Jack Strachan, 74), Neil Gauld (Marc Young, 81), John Maitland. Subs not used: Kieran Adams, Chris Ainslie (gk)

Booked: Begg, Park.

PETERHEAD: Raymond Jellema, Davie Donald, Lewis Davidson (Dennis Wyness, 78), Scott Ross, Callum Macdonald, Ryan Strachan (Roy McBain, 68), Bryan Deasley, Jamie Redman, Rory McAllister (Graeme Sharp, 81), Martin Bavidge, Dave Ross. Subs not used: Paul Watson, Paul Jarvie (gk).

Booked: Macdonald, Strachan.

Attendance: 998