Match Report: Lochs 0-9 Carloway
At Creagan Dubh, Leurbost.
Friday, 23rd July 2021, 19.00.
After last Friday’s very disappointing result against Ness in the first group game of the Jock Stein Cup, the task to qualify for the semi-final as the best runner up was daunting to say the least: Carloway needed to score a “barrowload of goals” against Lochs at the Creagan Dubh to overturn the deficit in their goal difference and hope results in the other two groups would go in their favour.
Only four of the team who had played in the Ness fixture retained their places in the starting line up (John A Bain, Ben Smith; Callum Masson and Duncan Shirkie). The game also marked the full debut of 16-year-old Aaron Ingram in goals as Dave Beaton was attending his brother’s wedding and back up keeper Gordon Craigie had requested his release to play for Stornoway United.
As such the line-up was as follows: Aaron Ingram; Callum “Beag” Mackay, John A Bain, “DI” MacLennan, Ben Smith; Callum Masson, Domhnall Mackay (captain), Duncan Shirkie, Stuart “Bubble” Macdonald; Andy “Bernera” Morrison and Kenny “Beag” Maclennan
The substitutes for the evening listed on the team sheet were Euan Shirkie, Kevin “Barra” MacNeil Murdo “Squegg”, Macleod, James Mackinnon and Morgan Macleod
In what can probably be described as the most explosive opening to a game by Carloway in their long history, and certainly since they returned to the league in 1978, they showed their intent by scoring three goals in the first four minutes. Callum Masson opened the scoring in the first minute when he received the ball out on the right wing from Kenny “Beag” Maclennan and ran into the open space and from the corner of the 18 yard box he thundered a shot into the far corner of the Lochs goal (0-1).
Within a minute Carloway were two up when Stuart “Bubble” was played through by a pass from Duncan Shirkie, and after running from just past the half way line he slotted the ball past the keeper from 18 yards out with aplomb (0-2)
A whirlwind opening four minutes was finished off when a Callum “Beag” Mackay cross from the right wing was headed home from close range by Kenny “Beag” Maclennan (0-3) Whew !!
Although Carloway dominated the early stages they did not have things all their own way and in the 16th minute Aaron Ingram pulled off a fine save by diving to his left and turning the ball round the post to deny Lochs what seemed a certain goal after a shot from outside the Carloway 18-yard box.
In the 20th minute Andy “Bernera” Morrison was brought down in the box. He took the resultant penalty himself and increased the score to four with a well struck penalty low to the keeper’s right (0-4).
A further penalty was awarded in the 44th minute when Duncan Shirkie was fouled and from another well struck penalty Andy “Bernera” scored his second goal and Carloway’s fifth (0-5)
Duncan Shirkie then picked up the ball from midfield ran down the Lochs right along the 18 yard box, went past the Lochs right back, got to the touchline and then played the ball across the face of the goal for Kenny “Beag” to tap into the net but to Carloway’s bewilderment the goal was disallowed by referee Farrell for offside.
A sixth goal was added by Duncan Shirkie in first half injury time when he picked up the ball in midfield got behind the Lochs defence, found himself one on one with the goalkeeper and slotted the ball into the corner of the Lochs net (0-6)
Half Time: Lochs 0 Carloway 6
The second half continued as the first and in the 52nd minute Carloway won a corner, which was taken from the left by Masson and was headed out by Allan Farrell. It was then picked up by John Bain out on the left who played it into the box again. The keeper got a hand to it, but it fell to Stuart “Bubble” Macdonald hovering around the penalty spot, who attempted a shot which was blocked but then poked it home at the second attempt from close range. (0-7)
The eighth goal arrived a minute later when Callum Masson, who had now switched to the left after Morgan Macleod had come on for Kenny “Beag” Maclennan, played a cross field ball from just inside the Lochs half to Morgan Macleod. Morgan, clear on goal though a bit to the right, carried on into the box and produced an excellent finish across the keeper and into the net from around 15 yards from quite a tight angle for his first Carloway goal (0-8)
Then, in the 57th minute the lead was extended to nine when “DI” Maclennan played the ball up to Andy “Bernera” in the left channel. As he drove towards goal, the keeper came out to the edge of the box to meet him. Andy went round him to his left, continued towards goal (despite shouts to shoot from the linesman!!) and then tapped home from about 6 yards to complete his hat trick. (0-9)
What is most surprising and inexplainable is how this goal saw the end of the goalscoring and that Carloway failed to add to their tally of nine goals in the last thirty minutes of the fixture despite their continued opportunities and dominance.
Interestingly, on scoring their ninth goal Carloway had overcome the goal difference deficit to such an extent that with Point winning at the time, all that was required for Carloway to progress to the semi-final was a goal for either Athletic or Back at Goathill. However, at the time thirty minutes remained in all the three fixtures and it was a “big ask” and ultimately it was not to be as both the other games ended in draws to dash their hopes, but it was still a valiant attempt, nevertheless.
Full Time: Lochs 0 Carloway 9
After such a comprehensive victory, the Carloway players all played well although a few seemed to stand out that bit more: John Bain once again (who also, arguably, has been Carloway’s most consistent performer to date) and the “Bernera boys” (Andy with his hat trick and Stuart “Bubble” with his double caused the Lochs defence problems throughout).
Another player worthy of mention is 16-year-old Aaron Ingram who had a very solid performance on his debut, the highlight being the excellent save in the 16th minute which prevented a certain goal.
However, my man of the match was Duncan Shirkie who had an assured and accomplished performance throughout, confirming his known potential by controlling the central midfield area spraying passes about, making runs, assists and tackles and topping it off with an excellent goal of his own.
Carloway player of the match: Duncan Shirkie
Lochs player of the match: Niall Houston
Manager: Billy Anderson.
Asst. Manager: Graeme “Windy” Miller.
Callum “Beag” Mackay John Alasdair Bain Donald “D.I.” Maclennan Ben Smith
Callum Masson Domhnall Mackay (capt.) Duncan Shirkie Stuart “Bubble” Macdonald
Andy “Bernera” Morrison Kenny “Beag” Maclennan
Subs. used: Morgan Macleod (Kenny “Beag” Maclennan) 50; Murdo “Squegg” Macleod (Domhnall Mackay) 61; Euan Shirkie (Callum “Beag” Mackay) 66; Kevin “Barra” MacNeil (Callum Masson) 67; James Mackinnon (Andy “Bernera” Morrison) 73.
Subs. not used: None.
Yellow cards: None
Manager: Lewis Mackenzie
Asst. Manager: Jonny Porter
Michael Ferguson Shaun Martin
Allan Turner Niall Houston Domhnall Graham Jamie Fraser
David Skene Ali “Laxay” Macdonald Allan Farrell (capt.) Lewis Macdonald
Subs. used: Matthew Murray (Shaun Martin) 45; Alistair Elder (Allan Turner) 45; Ben Duke (David Skene) 64; Donald Ross Morrison (Michael Ferguson) 75.
Subs. not used: None.
Yellow cards: None