Written by Nairn County FC November 4th 2017

CHEAP goals have cost Nairn County dearly in recent weeks and that trend continued at Bellslea with Fraserburgh two up early on in the second half through strikes that the visitors will feel could have been avoided. Jordan MacRae pulled one back to give Nairn hope but with County mounting a charge, a further two Fraserburgh efforts in the final 10 minutes sealed the points for the high-flying hosts. Fraserburgh started brightly and six minutes in, Gary Harris ran in on goal after meeting a flick on but he was denied by restored Nairn County goalkeeper Stephen Foster, who got down well to smother the striker's shot. The home side should have broken the deadlock on 19 minutes after Greg Buchan delivered a cross from the left that was met with a cushioned by the unmarked Paul Campbell but he directed his effort over the crossbar. The industry of Jordan MacRae brought about Nairn's first opening and the visitors should have opened the scoring on 23 minutes. The striker mugged Dean Cowie of possession wide on the left and raced in along the by-line before pulling the ball back to Liam MacDonald but the on-loan midfielder was denied a first goal in County colours as he directed his shot wide of the far post under pressure from a recovering defender. Four minutes later, Campbell was free to meet an in-swinging Ryan Cowie free kick from wide on the right with a header on the six-yard line but he sent the ball sailing over the crossbar. Foster then excelled on 35 minutes as he threw himself to his left to tip away Bryan Hay's header after the centre-half had connected with an in-swinging corner from the left. County's resistance was broken five minutes into the second half and it was an absolute gift for Fraserburgh. Willie West beat the out-rushing Foster to the ball at the edge of the box but the Broch midfielder could only flick it high up into the air. With Foster out of his goal, the visitors inexplicably allowed the ball to bounce in the six-yard box with Paul Campbell first to it as it dropped again and he blasted home a rising shot from close range. Just three minutes later, the Broch were two up and Nairn will feel it was another avoidable goal. Ryan Cowie pinged a free kick from just inside the Nairn half out on the right touchline towards the far post and the ball was allowed to travel all the way through to unmarked Paul Campbell, who was able to prod home his second of the afternoon from eight yards. County had a great chance to half the deficit on 59 minutes but Dylan Mackenzie went for power over precision from 15 yards after being found by Gary Kerr's cut back. And he could only blast the ball straight at Peter Tait in the Broch goal, who saved with his legs. Nairn gave themselves hope on 65 minutes though as they pulled a goal back. Jordan MacRae stepped up to a free kick 20 yards from goal in a central position and County's top scorer whipped the ball around the ball and into the bottom right-hand corner of the net. County committed bodies forward in hunt of a leveller but it was Fraserburgh who made the points safe 10 minutes from the end. Substitute Graham Johnston stepped up to a free kick 20 yards out and lifted the ball over the wall and into the bottom left-hand corner with his first touch of the game. Then, the Broch added a fourth with just four minutes remaining. County failed to clear a corner from the right with Ross Naismith dispossessed on the edge of the Nairn box by Paul Young, who saw a deflected 20-yard shot fly past Foster. Fraserburgh – Tait, Davidson, Hay, R. Cowie, Christie, D. Cowie, Rae, Young (yellow 64), Harris (West 34), Campbell (Johnston 77), Buchan (Combe 60). Subs unused: Sargent, Buchan, Flinn (gk). Nairn County – Foster, A. Naismith (yellow 79), R. MacDonald, K. McKenzie, Glenn Main, Porritt, J. Maclean, L. MacDonald (R. Naismith 68), Kerr (Ewen 77), MacRae, Ramsay (D. Mackenzie 46). Subs unused: Ednie, M. Macleod, Munro, D. Maclean (gk). Referee – Filippo Mazzoni. Graeme Macleod

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