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Sleat & Strath continue impressive start

posted 21 Apr 2013, 12:28 by Ben MacKinnon

Sleat & Strath travelled north on Saturday to take on Portree Juniors, a team that preseason had been tipped as title contenders. Juniors, like Sleat & Strath, had won their opening two fixtures.

Portree Juniors won the toss and chose to play with the gale force wind at their backs. The result was a barrage of attacks on Sleat & Straths goal as they struggled to get out of their own half. James Munley had been drafted into a defensive position, due to injuries to Bruce Neill and Martin MacKinnon, and put in a Man of the Match performance. The natural midfielder blocked and cleared wave after wave of attack, and any chance that got through the defence was handled by goalkeeper John Davie.

With the sustained pressure, Sleat & Strath would have been happy to go in at halftime level, or even a goal down, as the wind advantage would give them the edge in the second half. As it turned out they took the lead after 15 mins. Connaire Yoxon running through to nod the ball into the back of the net before the onrushing keeper could reach it. Sleat & Strath added to their lead just before half time. When Gordon MacCarroll breaks through one-on-one with the goalkeeper there is only ever going to be one outcome.

Next came the second half, and now Sleat & Strath were the ones with the wind at their backs. And it wasn't long before they capitalised as Connaire Yoxon first chipped the ball over the defence before chipping it again over the goalkeeper. However, Gordon MacCarroll wasn't to be outscored by a Yoxon for the second game in a row, and 2 minutes later curled one into the top corner from the edge of the box for his second and Sleat & Straths fourth of the day.

On the 68th minute, Sleat & Strath scored the goal of the game. It was a wonderful team goal that involved back heel flicks, dummies, great passing and resulted in a fine finished from Ben Yoxon. 

The manager then went through to process of using all five substitutions available, and one of these subs - Iain MacGillivray - had the final say, when he scored Sleat & Straths sixth goal of the game.

Other than a few refereeing decisions that didn't go Sleat & Straths way, it was a perfect day at the office. They now hold a joint league lead with Portree, who they face on Friday night in Kinloch, and have yet to concede a goal. The team seem to be back at the dominant strength that they had two seasons ago when they last won the league, and the depth of the squad is allowing the manager to handle the current injuries and still afford some players a rest. 

Other results from around the league:

 Glenelg2 - 1Staffin 
 Kyle3 - 4Portree 
 Plockton0 - 2Dunvegan
 Portree Juniors0 - 6Sleat & Strath
 Struan3 - 4GA United