ECHT travelled to Tarves for this, their penultimate league fixture of the season, their fate already signed sealed and delivered after a truly dismal Premier League campaign,ie Division One football next term.
Hosts Tarves went into this one knowing they needed maximum points from their remaining three fixtures,and even that might be less than enough to avoid a similar fate.
All credit to both sets of players for serving up an entertaining 90-minute spectacle in atrocious overhead weather conditions.
Echt, playing downslope, were quickly out of the traps and netted the opener after three minutes, Darren Stewart and Phil Craig combining down the right flank and though the latter’s attempt at goal was blocked, it broke kindly for Lewis Chouman to despatch into the vacant net.
Buoyed by this early breakthrough, Echt, playing some great attacking football, always looked likely to add to their advantage and home keeper Boddie was constantly in action.
Echt were not to be denied and, when a Craig corner was cleared to around the 30-yard mark, Alan Daun hit a spectacular dipping volley that found net off the underside of the Tarves crossbar for 0-2.
Tarves pulled one back when Paterson at the near post,unmarked, powered home a header off a Middleton flag kick.
Thereafter, the match flowed end to end and the homesters - having weathered Echt’s early dominance and cut the deficit to a single goal - would almost certainly have been content with a 1-2 halftime scoreline and a downslope second half.
Echt, however, re-established a two-goaladvantage after Stewart netted a scrambled effort when Paul Presslie was denied close in,Craig the main man in the build up.
In the second half, Tarves for long spells had Echt penned back in their own half but’ keeper Lewis Milne, ably assisted by the men in front of him and the odd rub of the green, gave nothing away and - as the minutes ticked away - so did home hopes of a comeback and Premier Division survival.
Michael Swan added to their woes by firing home an absolute cracker in the 89th minute.
ECHT; Milne, Symon, Daun, Cooper, A Davidson, J Roger, Chouman,Swan,Presslie, Stewart, Craig
Subs N Cooper[Trialist] , S Davidson
This Sunday, May 26, Echt meet Woodside in the final of the A.A.F.A Association Trophy at
Glenury, the home of Stonehaven Juniors, kick-off 2pm.
Echt have won this trophy on five previous occasions, whilst this is one that continues to elude the reigning Premier Division champions, Woodside.
Little doubt they will start as favourites this time, having won all three meetings between the two this season, albeit by the tightest of margins on each occasion.