Saints knocked out of cup

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Banchory travelled to Stonehaven last Saturday for the Dominos Pizza North Region Cup second round tie with a few injuries curtailing their squad, and bowed out of the competition after a fine first half dispaly from the Glenury Park side.

Banchory started brightly in the opening five minutes but Stonehaven gradually took over.

The home side were awarded a free kick 20 yards out but the Banchory wall did their job and blocked the effort.

Ex-Banchory player Lewis Shand was beginning to cause problems down the Stonehaven left and from one of his moves Gray and Pyper had to intervene at the expense of a corner from which Martin Shand hit the post.

With 13 minutes gone, Stonehaven took the lead when the home centre half popped up unmarked to head past Grant Sim.

Shaun Carrol had a chance with a free kick minutes later from 25 yards but his effort went a foot over the Stonehaven bar.

On 20 minutes Stonehaven went two up. A long ball from midfield found another ex-Saints player Keith Horne wide left, and he moved inside to strike a left foot shot past Sim.

Horne was through again minutes later but this time Sim saved well at his near post.

Banchory’s best chances came on the half hour mark. Firstly Garrett and Watt combined to win a corner from which Carrol’s shot was blocked and Alan McRae fired over the bar from 8 yards. Then Garrett raced down the right but his low cross was missed by everyone. Cammy Gray then tried his luck with driving cross that was scrambled away by the home defence.

Stonehaven, however, produced another two chances before scoring the vital third just before half time. A simple cross from the right was headed into the net from a yard out by Martin Shand in what looked like a suspicious offside position.

The second half was a bit of a disappointment with not much action to speak of.

A McRae header flashed past the Stonehaven post and then Garrett’s angled drive went harmlessly past, before Stoney increased their lead on 55 minutes when Horne was the thorn once again. Martin Shand broke down the left in what again looked like an offside position with his low cross being parried by Sim to the feet of Horne who tapped in from five yards.

Five minutes later Banchory got a goal back which was probably the goal of the game.

Robertson sent a lovely ball out to Watt on the left and the midfielder took one touch looked up and sent a cute lob over the keeper.

The referee once gain chose to ignore claims for offside when Horne was through again but Sim narrowed the angle and the Stonehaven chance was gone.

The game petered out, but Stonehaven deserved their win to advance to the third round.

Speaking after the match, Banchory manager Sandy Carrol said: “Stonehaven deserved the win. We lost three terrible goals in the first half and against teams of the calibre of Stonehaven you are asking for trouble.

“The second half was a bit better but again we lost a very soft goal.

“This week we entertain Banks O’Dee at home and I am looking for a positive reaction and I guarantee there will be one.”

Team: Sim, Pyper, Robertson, Morrison, Galashan, Carrol, Gray, McRae, Stainer, Garrett (Scully), Watt. Subs: Donald, Burke, Irvine.