Vale are blown off course by Jags
DEVERONVALE'S performance at Buckie on Saturday was as miserable as the weather.
The Banffers slumped to a disappointing 2-0 defeat at Victoria Park.
With driving rain and a strong wind for most of the 90 minutes, conditions were appalling.
Defensive Vale were on the back foot for most of the game and rarely threatened a dominant home side.
Boss Steve Dolan admitted: "I thought the first half we were poor. We seemed to sit in with a 5-4-1, when we were meant to be playing three up front and we just never got up the park."
Vale went behind 10 minutes before half time when goalkeeper Errol Watson was adjudged to have fouled Steven Ross in the box.
Ross picked himself up and sent Watson the wrong way with a clinical finish.
Watson was drafted in after number one Grant Pennet suffered a horrific hand injury at work on Thursday and had to undergo an operation over the weekend.
"Errol said he never touched the boy and it was a soft penalty," added Dolan.
"The first half set the tone for the game. I am not sure where the wind came from in the second half.
"We never really threatened their goalie and over the piece 2-0 was probably a fair reflection of the game.
"We lost two soft goals. The first one was not a penalty and the other one floated in at the back post and Errol said he slipped."
Andy MacAskill's wind-assisted effort nine minutes from the end of the game secured the points, although Vale were scarcely looking like getting back into the game.
"We didn't affect the game enough," said Dolan.
"We threw Sam [Robertson] and Jody [Munro] on up top to get a wee bit more pace and to a certain extent we got a bit better.
"We can't keep starting games like that.
"Against teams like Buckie it is hard to get back into the game.
"The wind did pick up in the second half, which didn't help us and we got hemmed in.
"We can have no complaints about the result and they deserved it."
Dolan revealed that Pennet, who signed a new deal last week, will be out for a while.
"It was a quite a bad injury involving hydraulic oil. They need to try and flush it out.
"He was operated on on Friday. Until he gets out on Monday we won't really know a timeline."
Watson agreed to help out Vale on Saturday but he is heading to Elgin City where he has been involved in a coaching capacity and as back up goalkeeper.
That means bringing in a new goalkeeper is a top priority for Dolan this week.
Deveronvale had the chance to leapfrog Buckie had they won on Saturday.
However, they remain in 10th place in the Highland League table.
Dolan will aim to have a goalkeeper signed up for the visit of Huntly to Princess Royal Park this Saturday.