1 - 3
|Stuart Taylor (2)||
Craig Gunn (15)
Alan Hughes (27)
Steven Anderson (77)
Gordon C McNab
|Callum Murray for John Maitland||
Richard Macadie for Craig Gunn (75)
Gordon C McNab for Jack Halliday (80)
Gary Manson (29)
Craig Gunn (58)
Danny Mackay (61)
Sam Mackay (81)
Harry Bruce (Referee)
Tom McKenna’s faith in his players paid off big time as Wick put the ghosts of their Nairn humiliation behind them with a convincing win at the home of reigning champions Buckie.
The Academy boss was looking for a reaction to the previous week’s 4-0 home trouncing and got one as his side showed their character – despite going a goal down in 82 seconds.
A delighted McKenna said: “We addressed what happened against Nairn last week with the lads and they said they wanted to make amends.
“The Nairn game would have been so easy to brush under the carpet but we had to face up to it. It was one of the worst performances I have seen during my time here and I didn’t recognise my players at times.
“But they were keen to put things right and I put my trust in them.
“We did make a couple of changes as we noticed that Buckie play a rigid 4-4-2 system and we changed to that ourselves.
“Credit to the players for adapting so well to it because it is one thing to set out a plan but another to execute it and the boys did just that.”
The plan received a dent just after the opening minute when Buckie’s Stuart Taylor latched on to Steven Ross’ ball to fire Thistle ahead.
However, unlike the week before, Wick refused to buckle and levelled after 15 minutes when Craig Gunn’s clinical close-range finish levelled the match.
Wick began to assert themselves and it was no surprise when they added a second as Alan Hughes’ superb volley from Gunn’s cross smashed into the roof of the home goal.
Buckie tried to get back into the match in the second half but Wick’s rearguard comfortably kept them at bay.
Academy sealed victory with 13 minutes left when Steven Anderson’s powerful shot went in via a deflection. Buckie’s misery was compounded with Jay Cheyne being sent-off for a second bookable offence just before full-time.
McKenna was delighted with his team, especially Gunn who bagged his first goal since rejoining the club.
He said: “With Craig it has been a matter of getting game time for him since his return to us.
“Players do wonder when their first goal will come and it can be a weight off their shoulders when it finally arrives.
“Not that Craig has indicated that’s been the case with him. He’s a reputable player and you knew that the first one would eventually come.
“His partnership with Mark MacGregor up front is looking to be a good one as they are complementing each other well.
“It’s a great victory – it’s always a big ask when you’re playing away at the reigning champions.
“But now we need to build on it and get a run going because the lads have set the standard now and we will be looking to maintain it.”
Match report written by Caithness Courier - Wed, Feb 7, 2018.
|Sean McCarthy (GK)||24||19||-||124||-|
|Richard Macadie (sub)||30||22||9||476||186|
|Gordon C McNab (sub)||29||16||4||16||4|