Assistant manager Raymond Gorski took charge on Saturday due to manager Sandy Carrol being rushed to hospital earlier in the week for what turned out to be a burst appendix. Sandy was allowed home on the afternoon of the match and is hoping to make a quick return to duties.
Once again Banchory were short in numbers and drafted in two of the Banchory 17s players.
Darren Reid played from the start partnering Chris Donald at the centre of defence, with Liam Sadler getting a run at right back in the second half.
Scott Garrett was in action straight from the kick off but his weak left foot shot was easily saved. But with only five minutes gone, Saints’ top scorer opened the scoring when he gathered the ball wide right sending in a cross-cum-shot that sailed over the Maud keeper’s head into the far corner. Chris Irvine was forced to make an easy low save minutes later before Cammy Gray rifled over the bar from 30 yards.
Home keeper Gatt was looking uncomfortable with crosses and his attempted punched clearance caused a scramble in his box but was eventually cleared.
There was a setback for Banchory on 17 minutes when Alan McRae jarred his knee and had to be replaced by Connor Forbes.
It was end-to-end stuff at this stage on a heavy pitch and Maud should have equalised when centre forward Clark shot past the far post when he really should have been hit the target.
Garrett and Gray were causing problems on both flanks and once again Garrett was through with just the keeper to beat, but Gatt saved at the second attempt from the edge of his box.
Irvine made a brave save at the feet of a Maud forward and then at the other end Richard Stainer just failed to reach the ball as he attempted to lob the oncoming Gatt.
On the half hour mark Banchory had two loud claims for a penalty in the same move, firstly with Stainer in a 50/50 challenge and then Gray allegedly being held back, but the referee was having none of it.
Maud had the final chance of the first half when a free kick wide left missed everyone in the six yard box and flashed a foot past the far post.
Saints made a good start to the second half and with only eight minutes gone, Gray scored an identical goal to Garrett with the Maud keeper flapping at a cross-cum-shot only to see the ball land in the back of the net to make it 2-0 Banchory.
Six minutes later it was 3-0 when Garrett ran onto a Shaun Carrol pass and rifle low past Gatt.
Banchory were in control now and Garrett almost got his hat trick but his goal bound shot was deflected over for a fruitless corner.
Campbell Watt was enjoying a good game in an unusual center midfield role and he combined well with Carrol to go close with a shot just over the Maud bar.
It was all Saints now and Stainer went close with a low free kick going inches past on 68 minutes.
Young Darren Reid broke from defence and released Garrett wide left with a perfect pass, and Garrett looked odds on to score his third but his parting shot was deflected for a corner.
On 78 minutes Banchory scored their fourth when Stainer beat the offside trap to pick his spot past the advancing Gatt to make it 4-0.
Carrol was forced to come off with a slight knock to be replaced by Liam Sadler moving to right back, with Darren Pyper moving into Carrol’s midfield position. Soon after Maud got their consolation goal when a long ball through the middle forced Irvine into a good point blank save, but the rebound was latched onto by Clark who made no mistake from 8 yards.
Team: Chris Irvine, Darren Pyper, Josh Robertson, Darren Reid, Chris Donald, Campbell Watt, Shaun Carrol (Liam Sadler), Alan McRae (Connor Forbes), Richard Stainer, Scott Garrett, Cammy Gray. Subs: Grant Sim, Cammy Buchan.
Speaking earlier this week, Saints manager Sandy Carrol was full of praise for his players and backroom staff.
He said: “It was another great win for the lads, but a special mention goes out to the backroom staff who are steering the ship whilst I am recovering from the operation.
Raymond Gorski, Kevin Smith (coach) and Gordon Humble (Match secretary) deserve a lot of credit for managing to draft in two Banchory youngsters into the squad, who both made their debut and did exceptionally well.”
Banchory’s next two matches are: Culter at Crombie Park, Thursday 26th April kick off 6.45pm, and Saturday 28th April Banks O’Dee at Spain Park, kick off 2.00pm.