Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Archie the Goalie fails to foil the Glen-Phew!

North Division 1
Caberfeidh 0 Glenurquhart 4
It’s official: Archie the goalie can be beaten but don’t run away with the idea that it’s easy. If the rest of the Cabers team had played half as well as Archie did on Saturday then there is little doubt that the Glen would have struggled even more to obtain a result that they actually did. In the end 4-0 seems a comfortable victory. When you are watching it from the side of the park then nothing ever seems quite so simple.
Right from the off, when he got his feet to a Neale Reid snap shot in the first minute, Archie looked to be in unbeatable form whereas when Smack had a wee sit down on the job in six minutes- the ball bounced over his head and slipped past the post,- the nerves were severely jangled. Wearing the traditional black and red specs, it was possible to say that the first 20 minutes or so, saw the Glen in fine form, firing the ball forward on all cylinders (how many metaphors can one hack mangle?)
Andrew Corrigan slipped a neat pass down the line- he appeared to be running freely on what is a traditionally sticky surface- but the ball was scrabbled wide. Next Eddie Tembo- you only realised when you thought about it seriously afterwards that he had a superb afternoon-drove the ball up to Calum Miller who pounced on the pass , made some space but drove it wide.
Worryingly, Cabers made a move or two forward themselves and just on the 20 minute mark, Ian Bartlett combined well with Lee Nicholl but his shot went wastefully high over the bar in the general direction of Dingwall. At the other end however, putting the ball over the bar looked as if it was about to become the flavour afternoon when after some neat work by Neale Reid, Andrew Corrigan lofted his shot into the trees towards the Spa Pavillion.
However, it came good for the Glen in 30 minutes when full centre Dave "Dixon" Maclennan, who had a productive afternoon in the cockpit of the conflict, played the ball through to Calum Miller who had his drive deflected by Archie for a corner. From the corner, the ball was worked back to Lewis Maclennan and his shot gave the Glen a well deserved lead though it was as well that Stuart Mackintosh was on his toes to save two minutes later from Graham Macgregor when he broke through for the home side.
Archie then came to Caber’s rescue when he saved a rasper of a drive from Neale Reid but it was all to no avail when a foul was awarded to the Glen. Andrew Corrigan danced around the ball for what seemed an age but in the end his polka was worth it because, having slipped the ball eventually to Lewis Maclennan, the second Glen goal was wrapped up. It was 42 minutes and that was Lewis twice on the score sheet and –sadly -once in the book because of too vigorous a protest at an offside call from ref Donnie Fraser.
The second half belonged to the Glen more completely though there was always the danger-in theory at least in the overheated mind of the Wing Centre- that Cabers would score and sneak back into the game. The third call effectively put an end to that when in 59 minutes Lewis Maclennan slipped a free hit to Neale Reid who hit it low into the D where by some miracle it sneaked past Archie in at the post.
The last quarter saw the Glen camped in the Cabers area of the field driven up there by the will power shown but the Glen centreline of Ally Mackintosh, Eddie Tembo and above all Dave Maclennan. All three guys put in a power of work and matched the Cabers midfield cleek for block. Glen brought on Gregor McCormack and Calum Fraser and these two helped keep up the pressure on Archie’s domain though front man Calum Miller had a sterling game up on the D and was unlucky not to hit the net on several occasions. The big man had an excellent game and it was most fitting that he had a hand in the creation of the final Glen goal in 82 minutes. The ball was driven long up the left by Ally Mackintosh to the big front man who swept it across the D to the inrushing Gregor McCormack. He dispatched it with panache past Archie, who had every right to be unhappy with the protection afforded him by his dispirited defenders.
And that was basically that. The Glen collected the points-if collected is not too complacent a word to use and Archie went off home.
"Well played, Archie" said the Glen backroom staff thanking the Almighty that the rest of the Cabers team could not have been accused of playing well. Doubtless even they will agree with that assessment: Archie’s body language and expression showed that these were his sentiments also.
"You can’t keep them all out," he said and then he wished the Glen luck in their next few games. Something is happening in the world of shinty-first Beauly and now Archie of Cabers being nice to the Glen. They must be up to something but what? Time will tell.
The picture- Mr Miller. He had an excellent afternoon and was well worthy of a snap.

Scottish Blogs