Stonehaven welcomed Hall Russell United to Glenury for their PMAC Superleague match, which was a dress rehearsal for the McBookie.com McLeman Cup Semi Final at the end of the month.
After a quiet opening quarter of an hour the Hive had the first meaningful chance of the game on 18 minutes.
The ball was played over the top of the visitors defence and ‘keeper Simpson came to clear but Armstrong got to the ball first and laid back to Anderson who in turn found Pyper but his ball across was blocked.
The Hive soon found themselves a goal down when a foul by Reid resulted in a penalty for Hall Russell’. Whitfield stepped up and sent Capstick the wrong way with his emphatic spot kick to open the scoring.
The hosts found themselves level less than 10 minutes later when a ball from Goate was headed on by one of the Hall Russell’ defenders into the path of SHAND who fired past Simpson.
Shaw came close a minute later to regaining the lead for the visitors but his shot was saved by Capstick.
Armstrong came agonisingly close to putting the Hive into the lead on 32 minutes when his free kick came crashing back off the crossbar and was held at the second attempt by Simpson.
With the last attack of the first half it was Hall Russell’ who took the lead with 42 minutes on the clock. The ball was played back and was missed by Reid which allowed Hardie to square to Shaw who, despite not making the cleanest of contacts, got enough to send the ball past Capstick.
Half Time - Stonehaven 1 v 2 Hall Russell United
The Hive came out for the second half looking to make amends for losing the goal just before the break and Armstrong saw his half volley held by Simpson on 50 minutes.
Just a minute later the equaliser came and it was the aforementioned Armstrong who was to play a significant part. The ball was played in from the left to the edge of the penalty area where it found ANDERSON who fired hard and low past Simpson into the bottom corner.
Shand had a chance a minute later when he was slipped in down the right however his shot could only find the side netting.
The hosts found themselves in front just two minutes later when Armstrong picked up a long ball and did well to play it into the path of SHAND whose shot trundled into the bottom corner to give The Hive a 3-2 lead.
Armstrong came close on 70 minutes but his shot flashed wide of the Hall Russell’ goal.
Shand had a great chance with five minutes remaining to increase the lead after Armstrong squared from the visitors’ right hand side however he was unable to find the target and the ball was cleared by the grateful visitors’ defence.
The miss was to cost Hive dearly as with almost the last action of the match Hall Russell’ equalised.
The ball was played out to the Hive right and wasn’t closed down allowing a cross into the box which found Mackie who made no mistake in bulleting a header past Capstick to give both sides a share of the points.
STONEHAVEN: Capstick, Goate, Low, Robertson, Reid, Anderson (McTavish 65), Pyper, Sulkevicius (Rattray), Armstrong (Cormack), Shand, McWilliam
Sub not used: Workman