Luthermuir promoted with fine win

LUTHERMUIR clinched promotion to the Aberdeenshire Amateur League Premier Division with a 1-0 win at home to Portlethen.

Portlethen kicked off as league leaders and promoted. Luthermuir’s win takes them to within two points of Portlethen and they need three more points from their final four games to finish as champions of Division One East.

The visitors should have scored in three minutes when Lewis Walker shot wide.

Luthermuir threatened in 17 minutes. Murdoch Anderson hooked the ball into the area and Greig had an overhead kick saved.

But the home side took the lead in 25 minutes. David Craig chipped the ball through and Greig had a header tipped on to the bar by Murphy. GREIG was first to react and regained possession before driving the ball home.

Hesitancy in the home defence let Will in and he went down in a challenge with ‘keeper Wands, but the referee said no penalty.

There was a flurry of action just before half-time. A quickly-taken free kick by Portlethen put Daniel Ross in and Wands saved at his feet. From the corner, a header from Will was cleared off the line by Michael Cruickshank.

On the whistle, Greig cut the ball back and it took a bad bobble as Ellis was about to shoot.

Half-time: Luthermuir 1, Portlethen 0.

Luthermuir needed a second goal and Jimmy Reid failed to connect with an Ellis cross, then a Ryan Milne cross found no takers.

In 67 minutes, Greig worked a one-two with Ewan Slesser and Murphy did just enough.

A Slesser shot on the turn was saved by Murphy, then Greig got to the line and his effort was saved at the post.

Luthermuir tried hard to make the points secure. Slesser hooked the ball over from a Cruickshank corner, then with eight minutes left, Greig drove over from long range.

In 87 minutes, Slesser played the ball across the face of the Portlethen goal and both Ellis and Greig just failed to force it home.

With two minutes left Portlethen appealed for a hand ball before a shot from Will was deflected for a corner.

Luthermuir: Wands, R. Darar, Young, Miller, Reid, Craig, Ellis, Morrison (Milne), Anderson (Slesser), Greig, Cruickshank. Subs: K. Darar, Lindsay and Chalmers.

Portlethen: Murphy, Sellar, Manson, Davidson, M. Mathieson, McIntosh, Walker, S. Mathieson, Will, D. Smith (Gray), Ross (Christie). Subs: Bragg and R. Smith.