Highland League: Injury time goal denied Buckie Thistle top spot, first win for Keith while Turriff United and Deveronvale pull off big comebacks
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FRASERBURGH struck a stoppage time penalty to deny Buckie Thistle victory and top spot in the Highland League on Wednesday night.
The big game at Victoria Park was one of four draws on a pulsating evening of action.
Keith handed new manager Craig Ewen a first win by defeating Wick Academy while Brechin City, Brora Rangers and Clach all gained three points.
The game of the night was at Buckie, where second place hosted first as Fraserburgh went into battle protecting their 100 per cent record.
A Gary Harris strike gave Broch a well-deserved half time lead and they looked on course to make it six wins out of six when it remained 1-0 going into the closing ten minutes.
But in a thrilling finish, Sam Urquhart's sixth of the season levelled for Jags, who then went in front from Kyle MacLeod's 86th minute strike.
Now Buckie were destined for the summit, until a final twist saw Mark McLauchlan's challenge on Paul Campbell landed Fraserburgh a penalty in the second minute of injury time, and Campbell scored to maintain his team's unbeaten start.
Keith manager Craig Ewen has also made an undefeated start to his Kynoch Park career after leading the Maroons to a 2-0 success over Wick.
Both goals came from the penalty spot at the end of each half, Przemyslaw Nawrocki and Michael Selfridge netting while Wick had Ross Allan sent off near the end.
Brechin City came from behind to beat Formartine United 4-1 and go third, helped by Kieran Inglis' hat-trick.
Richard Hastings' first game in charge of Inverurie Locos was a 1-1 draw with Rothes, who levelled through Fraser Robertson after Rob Ward's goal put Locos ahead at the interval.
Goals by Liam Taylor and James Anderson handed Clach a 2-0 win at Lossiemouth, who had James Leslie sent off,.
Champions Brora Rangers' return to form continued with a 4-0 win over an understrength Forres Mechanics.
First half strikes by Gregor Macdonald and Jordan MacRae put the Cattachs in charge and after the break, Matthew Wright and Colin Williamson put the game to bed.
Thrills and spills were in abundance in Banffshire, where Turriff and Deveronvale fought back for a point in a pair of 3-3 draws.
At The Haughs, a Turriff side still searching for their first win looked dead and buried at 3-0 down to Strathspey Thistle with just 17 minutes to go.
Andy Skinner netted two penalties for the Grantown side after 2 and 58 minutes with James McShane also on target (14) to put Jags in charge.
But Dean Donaldson's men staged a late revival, sparked by James Chalmers' goal on 73 minutes.
Matty McDonald was the Turriff goal hero in the end, pulling it back to 3-2 on 83 minutes then scoring an equaliser two minutes from time, from the third penalty kick of the night.
Huntly's fine start looked like carrying on when they led Deveronvale 3-1 at the break.
Strikes by Angus Grant and Gavin Elphinstone had the Christie Park men 2-0 up inside the opening quarter.
Vale were awarded a penalty and although Ross Aitken's kick was saved by Euan Storrier, the defender followed up to net the rebound and reduce the deficit.
Grant grabbed his second of the night for Huntly on the stroke of half time to restore the two-goal gap.
But Deveronvale weren't finished, and when a goal effort went in off keeper Storrier for an own goal on 65 minutes, the game was back in the melting pot.
Ten minutes from time, Dane Ballard pounced for his fourth goal of the season to rescue a point for Vale.
The match between Nairn County and Fort William was postponed.
Wednesday's Highland League results:
Brechin City 4 Formartine United 1
Brora Rangers 4 Forres Mechanics 0
Buckie Thistle 2 Fraserburgh 2
Deveronvale 3 Huntly 3
Inverurie Locos 1 Rothes 1
Keith 2 Wick Academy 0
Lossiemouth 0 Clachnacuddin 2
Nairn County P Fort William P
Turriff United 3 Strathspey Thistle 3