Stonehaven have given themselves some hope – and perhaps shown they are better than their league positioning – with a rousing 3-1 with over Nairn St Ninian as their battle against relegation continues in the McBookie Superleague.
Calum Watson grabbed himself a brace, with Rob Armstrong getting the other for Stonehaven. Martyn Rollo’s team are second bottom of the table – a point ahead of Maud, who have played five games less, and two points behind Ellon United, who have two games in hand. Stoney have played more game than all but one other side in the division, but another three teams are within four points of Rollo’s Stoney, and games in hand don’t guarantee points.
Ellon United, who are of course just two points ahead, lost 3-0 to bottom side Maud this weekend. So without a doubt, Stonehaven will have their eyes on the Meadows’ side – even though Ellon are in a relegation playoff spot, it at least isn’t an automatic relegation birth.
NE98 spoke to Stonehaven’s head coach Martyn Rollo, he told us how big the win was for Stoney, Rollo said:
“It was a big win for the club and one that has been coming for a long time. Anyone who has watched us as of late will testify to the improvement in the team’s performances.”
“We knew our fortunes would change though and Saturday’s result was a reflection of the hard work the guys have been putting in over the past few weeks.”
“A number of managers have praised our team’s performances and expressed shock at our standing in the league.”
“We have lacked a clinical edge.”
“The league is extremely tight and we still have huge games to play. We have trips to both Maud and Ellon, our nearest rivals in the league and those games are proverbial ‘6 pointers’.”
“We do however, feel we are capable of taking points off anyone in the league.”
Finally, we asked Rollo just how likely he felt survival in the Superleague is for Stoney this season, Rollo said:
“The support of the local community is as always appreciated in achieving this challenge and I promise to you we will do everything possible to stay in the Superleague this season.”
Unfortunately for Stonehaven, their next match-up is an away game against league leaders Banks O’Dee – so that will make keeping up the momentum a difficult task – but Stoney have at times been most impressive this season when positioned as the underdog.
The amateur ranks Premier Division played host to a Mearns derby – As seventh placed St Laurence, who are pushing for a spot in the top four, hosted third placed Cowie Thistle. With Cowie having possibly not given up on a potential title win.
Cowie are the team with positional advantage, and they ran out narrow winners with a 3-2 victory. Lovick and Smith scored for Cowie, along with the aid of an own goal. Meanwhile, Fraser Stuart and Ewan Slesser got the goals for St Laurence.
The win puts Thistle second in the table, 11 points behind top of the league Sportsmans Club – although that gap can be closed to just two, should Cowie win their three games in hand. That said, third place Woodside have two games in hand over Cowie and are just two points behind – so all to play for really.
St Laurence are still seventh – Rothie Rovers in the position behind them have played just half the amount of games of the Laurencekirk side. However, they are just four points away from fourth placed MS United – with a game in hand – so there is still every chance of a finish in the top four for the side who were of course promoted to this league last season.
Both sides had away games this coming weekend. Cowie after away to RGU, meanwhile St Laurence travel to face Westdyke.
Bervie Caledonian waited a whole month to play University in the North Divison One. They probably wished they never ended up getting to play them this weekend, as the visitors put seven past Bervie – without reply.
The horror show result will have been the last thing Bervie needed, with promotion on their minds. Caley will need a top two finish to do that and Bervie, who are fourth, are ten points behind the top two – although they do have two games in hand. Bervie’s Facebook page described the fixture as a “bad bad day.” And remarked that to improve the squad would need to up their “levels of commitment and performance.”
Bervie are away against Continental on Saturday.
An emphatic 8-0 win had put Stonehaven Athletic top of the Division Two North. Lewie Sawyer scored half of the goals on the day, with Gunn, Davidson and a Stout brace rounding off the impressive win over Lads Club Amateurs.
Athletic sit two points ahead of second placed FC Polska – although Polska do have two games in hand. However, in terms of the goal of promotion, Athletic are four points ahead of third placed Kemnay, having played the same amount of games. Although Athletic will surely still believe they can win the league title.
Athletic are also on their travels on Saturday, facing University Colts.
AC Mill Inn were the only team not in action this weekend – they are back to it, they have a Rainbow City Taxis Aberdeen FC Trophy match against Newtonhill.
Stonehaven Ladies have been eliminated from the SWFL Divison One Cup at the first time of asking. The competition, which acts as a league cup for the three separate regional Division One’s, saw Matt Smith’s side defeated 7-2 by fellow Northern side Inverness Caledonian Thistle. The scorers for Stoney were Smith and Milne.
Stoney Ladies coach Matt Smith provided NE98 with a match report:
“Inverness have a few consecutive years experience at both division 1 and premier league level and over the 90 minutes the experience showed, although Stonehaven more than matched them over periods of the match.
The Stoney ladies goals came from winger Elise Smith and powerhouse Midfielder Alana Milne in either half but Inverness displayed the speed and quality required to breakdown the stern Stonehaven defense and score a few tremendous team goals.
A tough lesson learned for Stoney ladies today. Final score Inverness 7 – Stoney ladies 2.”
It’s back to league action for Stoney this weekend, They’ll be hosting Deveronvale Ladies, who also lost on the opening day of the season.
In youth action this weekend – Stonehaven YFC Madrid lost out 2-1 to Banchory Boys in the U15’s ADJFA League B, Stonehaven YFC’s Under 14’s beat Huntly 5-2 in the ADJFA League Section 1, Stonehaven United drew 0-0 away from home against Kintore United in the U13’s League B. Finally, in the same league, Bervie Caley YFC were 6-3 victors over Deveronvale.
The fixtures in the Mearns this weekend:
Banks O’Dee Albion Vs Stonehaven, Spain Park, Aberdeen, Saturday, 2:00PM
Stonehaven Ladies Vs Deveronvale Ladies, Mineralwell Park, Stonehaven, Sunday, 2:00PM
Newtonhill Vs AC Mill Inn, Newton Park, Newtonhill, Saturday, 2:00PM
RGU Vs Cowie Thistle, Kaimhill Astro, Aberdeen, Saturday, 2:00PM
Westdyke Vs St Laurence, Westdyke Astro, Aberdeen, Saturday 2:00PM
Continental Vs Bervie Caledonian, Webster Park, Aberdeen, Saturday 2:00PM
University Colts Vs Stonehaven Athletic, Balgownie, Aberdeen, Saturday 2:00PM