Keeper's heroics as Wick get point
WICK Academy manager Tom McKenna was singing the praises of Sean McCarthy after the keeper's heroics helped earn a point against Inverurie Locos on Saturday.
It ended 1-1 at Harlaw Park after Gordon MacNab's opener in 11 minutes was cancelled out by Neil McLean for the home side on the half-hour mark.
However, the gloves of McCarthy received a workout and then some as the Wick goalie pulled off a series of fine saves.
Inverurie's Chris Angus must have been sick of Academy's man in purple as he was the main victim of McCarthy's display. The home hit-man was denied time and again by him – not to mention the woodwork thwarting him as well.
McKenna said: "Sean was absolutely outstanding.
"He dealt with everything thrown at him with confidence. We are not surprised at how well he played because he is very reliable for us when called upon.
"There were two saves in particular that were excellent.
"Had either one gone in then it could have been game over.
"That sort of display also inspires defences to play well and I thought our back four were very solid, especially as they had a lot of pressure to deal with in the second half."
The Scorries got out of the traps from the first whistle, pressing and harrying Locos like men possessed before receiving their reward of MacNab's opening goal.
McKenna added: "Those first 20 minutes are probably the best I've seen us play during my time here.
"Locos couldn't settle on the ball and, because of the intensity of our pressing, they couldn't get out of their half.
"I was saying to Titchie [assistant manager Richard Hughes] on the touchline that there was no way we could keep up this level for 90 minutes.
"And so it proved. Once we got the goal, we seemed to sit back and allow Locos to come back into it and cause us problems.
"Thankfully our goalkeeper and back four were brave, outstanding, and showed great resilience in keeping Inverurie at bay in the second half.
"Saying that, on the break, we had a couple of chances late on that could have won the game for us."
There was one contentious moment in the match when Locos were denied a penalty following a clash between Wick skipper Alan Farquhar and Colin Charlesworth.
McKenna said: "From where I was standing, I thought a penalty would have been given to Locos.
"I asked the ref about it afterwards and he said he didn't give it because Charlesworth had 'lost control of the ball'.
"That's his interpretation of it, although I think we've been a bit fortunate on that one."