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Groats looking to get title wrapped up after victory over United


By John MacLeod


Groats' Ryan Campbell takes on Shaun Forbes in front of a big crowd at Ham Park. Picture: James Gunn
Groats' Ryan Campbell takes on Shaun Forbes in front of a big crowd at Ham Park. Picture: James Gunn

WICK Groats' dominance of Caithness county football looks set to continue after they defeated rivals Pentland United 3-1 in a top-of-the-table clash at Ham Park.

The victory sent Groats four points clear at the top of CAFA Division One with three games to play.

Groats made county history last year with a record-breaking seventh successive title win and manager Kevin Anderson is hoping his side are on the threshold of yet another title triumph.

We probably should have won by more but it was all about getting the three points.

“Nothing is won yet, but the the win sets us up nicely,” he said.

“Thankfully, to a man, everyone turned up. We probably should have won by more but it was all about getting the three points.

“There is a wee bit of pressure off now. We will try and win every game and get things wrapped up as soon as we can. But it won't be easy, we've got a tough run-in.”

Groats and United will meet once more this season when they clash in the Highland Amateur Cup semi-final at Castletown on Saturday.

Stewart Ross fires home the opening goal as James More is stranded on the line. Picture: James Gunn
Stewart Ross fires home the opening goal as James More is stranded on the line. Picture: James Gunn

Stewart Ross gave Groats the lead in the 25th minute when he bundled in a Ben Sinclair corner at the near post.

Groats had chances to increase the lead but they found United keeper James More in fine form.

However, More was beaten again on the hour mark when Graham MacNab smashed the ball into the net from close range.

Sinclair made sure of victory in the 75th minute when he raced clear to slot home goal number three.

United grabbed a consolation goal in the first minute of stoppage time when the usually impeccable Graeme Williamson inadvertently clawed a cross ball into his own net.

Lybster boosted their hopes of a top-four finish as they defeated Thurso Acks 3-1 at the Dammies.

Jonah Martens opened the scoring on the half-hour mark when he netted with a left-foot finish after being teed up by Bobby Gunn.

The roles were reversed for the second goal five minutes from the break when Martens cut the ball back for Gunn to fire into the bottom corner.

Wick Groats' Graham MacNab hit the crossbar with this effort. Picture: James Gunn
Wick Groats' Graham MacNab hit the crossbar with this effort. Picture: James Gunn

Martens put the game out of Acks’ reach when he scored from the penalty spot in the 55th minute after Callum Grant had been fouled in the box.

Acks did get a consolation with 10 minutes remaining when Sean Munro rose highest in the box to head home.

Lybster player/manager Gunn said: “Acks are always a tough team to play against so we are delighted to get the points. A top-four finish would be ideal but staying up was the main objective this season.

“Last season we struggled a bit but this season we've done better in every competition.”

In Division Two, High Ormlie Hotspur leapfrogged Watten into second place on goal difference with a 3-2 home victory.

Ben Gordon scored twice for Hotspur, while Andrew Richardson was also on target.

Owen Cormack and Lewis Jack replied for Watten.

Fixtures: Thursday – Division One: Castletown v Thurso Swifts (7.15pm).

Friday – Steven Cup final: High Ormlie Hotspur v Wick Thistle (7pm, at Lybster).



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