Vale started this match with the side that started in the away win against Keith last week but saw a bench strengthened by the returns of Michael Dunn, Lewis Dunbar and Liam Forbes. The 3-2 win was thoroughly deserved as Vale played the better football in both halves and, again, had some excellent chances been taken the margin could easily have been 2 or 3 more.
Vale attacked the stand end of The Haughs in the first half and created a number of good chances in the first 12 minutes. The first fell to Sam Robertson but was well blocked at close range by Turriff keeper Fraser Hobday, who also blocked a shot from the rebound which had been picked up Robert Scott. Another good attacking move moments later resulted in another chance for Robert Scott but his shot went narrowly past the keeper’s left-hand post. Having spurned these chances Vale fell behind in the 13th minute when Turriff central defender Ross Anderson met a corner from the right-hand side and put a powerful header past Robbie Mutch. That lead lasted about one minute until Robert Scott picked up a cross in the box and deftly steered the ball past Hobday for his 16th goal of the season.
Both sides competed strongly to get a lead before half-time and there were some tough tackles in midfield. Turriff youngster, Dylan Stuart, was unlucky to pick up a yellow card for two fairly innocuous fouls within a minute. Turriff keeper Hobday, however, was lucky to receive only a yellow for a two footed lunge at Robert Scott which caused a bit of a melee, some pushing and some unpleasant exchanges. The linesman on the dugout side of the pitch seemed to think that because an offside decision had been given moments before the tackle that it “didn’t count”. Referee McFarlane rightly corrected him on the rules but only showed a yellow card when the raised studs could have easily resulted in a red.
As has happened several times this season Vale conceded just on half-time when central defender Ross Anderson had a great run from his own half and hit a powerful shot from distance past Robbie Mutch. At that stage Vale fans thoughts were likely turning to the games the Club has lost this season by one goal margins and the points they could have had if the results had gone Vale’s way. Vale has lost 6 games this season by one goal and also dropped points in two tight draws.
Vale continued to produce some good play in the Turriff half when the game resumed and levelled the scores in the 55th minute with a neatly taken 9th goal of the season by Grant Noble. Vale brought on Club Captain Graeme Watt for Sam Robertson and Watty’s experience and composure showed in the 66th minute when he took a pass from Grant Noble and coolly slotted the ball past Hobday to give Vale the lead. Turriff threw Anderson forward in search of his hat trick and an equalising goal but Vale contained matters fairly comfortably and ran out deserving winners with a final score of 3-2 to keep them in 11th position.
Vale’s final game of the season is next Saturday at PRP against second place Brora Rangers with an early kick-off at 2.30pm.