Echt’s starting line up for this North of Scotland Cup 2nd Round tie at Inverdee was listed as same again in the wake of their impressive 4-3 Scottish Cup victory over Gourock Thistle in Greenock last week, however full back Jamie Gill failed to complete the warm up due to an injury, and this opened the door for a first competitive start for youngster Marc Lawrence.
Division 2 North side Northern Utd, only in their second season in the Aberdeenshire Amateurs provided the opposition.
Echt Skipper Alan Douglas gave Echt an early sixth minute lead, picking up a ball played to the edge of the home box by Lawrence. He controlled and turned to drill the opener low across home keeper MacKay and inside the far post.
Despite this early setback, United forced Echt to defend a couple of corners and with fifteen minutes on the clock frontman McKenzie, from the edge of the box, fired a grounder just wide of Lewis Milne’s left hand post.
The wake up call that Echt probably needed arrived on the 20 minute mark when United drew level with a fine goal. Echt conceded possession in a central position in their own half, the ball was worked through the heart of the Echt rearguard, and a neat one-two on the edge of the Echt box allowed McCrief to level with ease.
In 25 minutes Kieran Graham picked out Greg Kane left side with a fine diagonal crossfield ball, and when a high cross was delivered back post, Jamie Wood’s header was saved by MacKay.
Two minutes later, following an exchange of midfield passes involving several Echt Players, Kane, from a central position some 30 yards out caught out MacKay and restored Echt’s advantage.
Following a spell of Echt pressure which failed to produce another goal the home side got forward again with intent and keeper Milne was forced to race of his line to thwart McKenzie with a 50-50 tackle around the penalty spot.
In 35 minutes, Kane put clear daylight between the sides, rising to power a header on a Graham delivery into the net despite MacKay getting a good touch on it.
Any chance of the home side causing an upset was even more unlikely two minutes later when Echt netted again.
Douglas sent Ian Leith free down the left and his byline cross was easily swept home by Jamie Wood for 1-4.
Prior to the break Lawrence cheekily tried to chip MacKay from the half way line but his effort was just marginally high.
United‘s McKenzie bulldozed his way along the Echt left byline in 49 minutes but his close in strike was blocked by Milne.
When United were awarded a free kick, left side, just at the junction of the Echt box, Munro fired a powerful drive across goal that just whistled past the post.
The second half unfolded with the home side continuing to give a good account of themselves whilst Echt sat comfortably on their three goal advantage.
In 63 minutes Kane thought he had netted his first Echt hat-trick when he converted a Wood cross but the referee ruled offside.
Wood added a fifth for Echt in 81 minutes with an 18 yard chip shot and substitute J Roger, close in, stabbed home a sixth after MacKay failed to deal with a fairly harmless cross.
Echt: L Milne, Birse, Lawrence, Leith, Aberdein, G Milne, Graham, Douglas, Kane, MacLeod, Wood. Subs: J Roger, Bennett, A Davidson, McGillivray.