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Lossiemouth United defeat Burghead Thistle in Grill Cup to win first match back in North Region junior football

By Craig Christie

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After almost seven years out of north junior football, Lossiemouth United returned with a bang this week.

Lossiemouth United manager Fraser Kellas (left) and chairman Alex Lauriston have led the club back into the junior league. Picture: Daniel Forsyth..
Lossiemouth United manager Fraser Kellas (left) and chairman Alex Lauriston have led the club back into the junior league. Picture: Daniel Forsyth..

United were accepted back into the junior set-up earlier this summer, having dropped out in December 2015.

With local football legend Fraser Kellas taking over as manager, the coast club appointed a new committee with fresh plans to take United forward in years to come.

The new junior season kicked off on Saturday but United had to wait until Tuesday night for their first group match in the Grill Cup at home to coast neighbours Burghead Thistle.

It proved to be a successful return to action for the Lossie boys as they won the match 2-0.

A first half strike by Kryzstof Gryc gave United the edge at the break and former Highland League striker James McLaren netted in the second half to seal the win.

Burghead had beaten Islavale 2-0 in their Grill Cup opener on Saturday with Kelvin McKenzie and Ryan McPherson getting their goals.

Tuesday was also a profitable night for New Elgin as they pulled off the shock result of their group section.

New Elgin had lost 3-1 at Forres Thistle in their cup opener on Saturday and welcomed Premier League side Nairn St Ninian to Nicol-Togneri Park for match number two.

The match was going according to script when Nairn struck first through Charlie Fonweban, and when ex-Forres Mechanics man Davie Chambers added a second after the break, New Elgin's chances looked bleak.

But a remarkable revival from the Free Staters saw Stewart McLaren pulled one back, then sub Liam McAuslan became an instant hero by netting twice in a three-minute spell to shoot the home side to victory.

Forres Thistle top the group but were held to a 1-1 draw at Dufftown, with Brandon Hutcheson's first half opener cancelled out by Euan Simpson's 75th minute leveller.

Hutcheson, Charlie Beck and an own goal accounted for Jags' tally on Saturday against New Elgin, whose scorer was Dave McNamara.

Simpson also scored in Dufftown's 3-1 loss at Nairn on Saturday.

Grill Cup tables
Grill Cup tables

Rothie Rovers have made a strong start with two wins out of two in group six.

They were 4-0 winners at home to Deveronside on Tuesday night thanks to goals by Ethan Grant (2), Gavin Smart and Jake Stewart.

Stewart's stoppage time strike on Saturday had earned Rovers a 3-2 win at Maud, his second of the game with Ryan Walker also scoring.

Deveronside had lost by the same 4-0 scoreline at home to Fraserburgh United on Saturday.

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