Mackie reach sevens semi-finals

The newly formed Mackie 7s squad travelled to the Garioch 7s on Saturday for the clubs first outing at sevens rugby in three years. Rather depleted by injuries and end of season blues, the Mackie squad of Morgan, Mellis, Leask, Kelly, Levack, Thompson, C. Gray, Garden and Lawson were bolstered by the addition of Roux and Lane who had only played a handful of times between them this year.

In their first group game, Mackie played Garioch Barbarians who struggled against the well organised away team. Levack had two easy finishes from good play in quick succession to settle nerves and put the team into their stride. Lane scored with a trademark 40m sprint before the floodgates opened with Lane adding another try, Gray picked up a brace, Dave Garden scored too before club captain Thompson weaved through for the final score 50-0.

The second pool game was against old rivals Aberdeen Wanderers. Wanderers looked to be on top and scored early on with some un-sevens like crash ball play. A second mistake let Wanderers in for another try. Levack and Morgan re-entered play to try and firm up the structure and sure enough it did and Leask pulled one try back with a pitch length run. Alas fitness began to tell and despite their efforts Mackie could not pull it back and with the game becoming frantic, Wanderers broke again to score in the corner. Final score 17-7.

Harsh words preceded the quarter final match with Caithness – who must have been keen to beat Mackie after two losses in the league this year. In a thrilling match, Mackie played exceptionally well in the first half, displaying patience in possession and a killer instinct when it counted with Lane and Lawson scoring under the posts. Unfortunately a “wild gust of wind” forced Lane’s conversion wide! Caithness pulled one back before half-time. Caithness capitalised on some loose defending around the ruck and pulled level after a couple of minutes. Mackie gave themselves a mountain to climb when Lane was sent off for a high tackle and from the subsequent penalty, Caithness took the lead with just a few minutes remaining.

Lane came back on and with a full compliment, Lawson and Lane stole the ball in the ruck and it was fed out to Leask who turned on the warp drive to run another pitch length to score under the posts. He converted to level the with the last kick.

In sudden death extra time, Gray added an injection of pace and drew the man to pass to Levack who outsprinted the scrambling last man to dot the ball down under the posts to win the game.

The semi final was against Gordonians, who displayed another completely different team to that which Mackie had faced in either of the two league games against them. Mackie who had won both league matches however seemed to have lost the edge and despite going up 14-5 through Lawson and Leask in the first half, conceded three further tries to lose 22-14.