Electric “Shockie” blasts Skye into Bailliemore semi finals

Strathglass 0
Skye 1
(H.T. 0-0)

A Johnathan “Shockie” MacLennan goal 20 minutes from time was enough to give Skye victory at Strathglass on Saturday and take the islanders into the semi final of the Balliemore Cup.

In a tight match in which Skye just about had the edge, MacLennan struck his fourth goal in three games to once more prove his worth in a new attacking role.
Skye now wait for next week’s draw to see who they face for a place in the final as they bid to capture the cup — which they won in 2008 — for a second time. Ballachulish, Aberdour or Inverness will lie in wait.

In what was always likely to be a tough encounter Strathglass — who like Skye have yet to be beaten in the league so far — started brightly. Keeper Jamie Gannon had to look lively to turn round a shot in the first minute, but as the islanders settled Danny Morrison twice fired shots off target either side of an effort over the bar from MacLennan.

In a bid to freshen up the Skye forward line manager John MacLeod replaced Morrison with Jordan Murchison after 35 minutes, though the teams went in goalless at the interval.
The visitors started the second period on the front foot, with Will Cowie firing just past to signal the start of some sustained Skye pressure.

In another reshuffle Iain Murray came on to the centre line to replace Ally “Spod” MacLeod, and though Gannon was forced into some further action, Skye continued to tighten their grip on midfield.
Jordan Murchison shot wide of goal and moments later came even closer to making the breakthrough. However, his fine finish in the 67th minute was ruled out for an offside after Allan MacKinnon had strayed inside the area.

Three minutes later, though, Skye were celebrating when MacLennan showed nice control before dispatching quickly into the net to break the deadlock.
As Strathglass battled hard in the closing stages for an equaliser Gannon made a great stop with his feet, but the visitors held out to stay in the hunt for silverware on four fronts.

The Camanachd Cup might be the more unrealistic of that quadruple, but success in the MacTavish Plate — Skye play Inverness in the semi in Portree this Saturday — the Balliemore Cup and the North First Division remain targets for the island club in the coming months.

Skye boss John MacLeod said: “Strathglass gave us a hard game. Both teams were very evenly matched, but we just shaded it and are delighted to be in the draw for the semi-finals.”