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Digital Subscriptions > The Oban Times & Lochaber Times > 7th September 2017 > Women’s shinty takes centre stage

Women’s shinty takes centre stage

SKYE Camanachd won the Marine Harvest Valerie Fraser Cup and Glengarry lifted the Marine Harvest Challenge Cup as women’s shinty took centre stage on Saturday September 2.

Marine Harvest Valerie Fraser Cup final

Skye Camanachd

6 Lochaber 1

Skye Camanachd won the Marine Harvest Valerie Fraser Cup for the first time with a 6-1 win over Lochaber in the final at An Aird.

A good-sized crowd gathered for this show-piece occasion which included a children’s banner parade ahead of throwup with Ardnamurchan Primary School judged to have the best display.

The match was a repeat of the 2016 final when four-goal Kirsty Delaney helped Lochaber secure a 4-2 victory. This was the first time the sides had met since that day and Skye captain Lorna MacRae, who scored both her team’s goals 12 months earlier, was to play a key role.

Ahead of throw-up, the players were piped onto the field and they, along with managers Robbie Gordon and Michael Delaney, were introduced to Iain Fraser from sponsors Marine Harvest and Women’s Camanachd Association president Lisa MacColl.

Skye took the lead after three minutes. Caitlin MacLean’s low shot from distance was saved with her feet by Lochaber keeper Aeleen Campbell but Lorna MacRae was quickly in to bundle the rebound over the line.

Lorna MacRae doubled Skye’s advantage on 17 minutes when she collected a low Caitlin MacLean pass from the right and took a touch to the left before her back-hand effort beat the keeper.

Alison MacVicar gave Lochaber hope on 23 minutes when she sent the ball low into the net after Skye keeper Sarah-Jane Ferguson had saved a Kirsty Delaney effort following a freehit on the Lochaber left.

Skye got back on the offensive and Lorna MacRae completed her hat-trick on 29 minutes, accepting a Sarah Corrigall pass before taking the ball round the keeper and tapping it home to make it 3-1 at the break.

Lorna MacRae put the outcome beyond doubt on 46 minutes. Jenna Beaton’s ball from the left gave MacRae an initial shooting chance but the keeper saved. Caitlin MacLean’s effort from the rebound hit the post but Lorna MacRae followed up to knock the ball home from close range.

Jenna Beaton made it 5-1 four minutes later with a wellworked goal. Caitlin MacLean was again involved as she won a couple of challenges on the Skye right before finding Lorna MacRae in space. MacRae ran at the Lochaber defence before picking out her strike partner and Jenna Beaton struck the ball low into the net.

It was fitting Lorna MacRae rounded off the scoring. Sarah Corrigall cut in from the Skye left and her short pass found MacRae who took a touch past a defender before running in on goal and stroking the ball low into the net to make it 6-1 with 67 minutes played.

After the disappointment of losing out in the final to Glasgow Mid Argyll in 2014 and Lochaber last year, Skye tasted Valerie Fraser Cup success for the first time and Iain Fraser from sponsors Marine Harvest presented the trophy to captain Lorna MacRae.

Lorna also deservedly collected the player of the match award from sponsor Peter Gow. The sides have still to meet twice more in the league this season with the title destination still in the balance.

Iain Kennedy was the match referee.

Skye head coach Robbie Gordon spoke after the match. ‘The girls played really, really well,’ he said. ‘All the things we have practiced at training paid off today. Our movement was good, our passing was good and our shooting was good. Everyone played their part and we were dominant in every area of the park. It’s not every day you win a Camanachd Cup and these girls have worked really hard and they deserve every bit of it.’

Skye captain Lorna MacRae added: ‘After last year’s performance, we knew what we had to do today. This is the biggest competition to win so it’s great to get this success under our belts. We’ll now concentrate on trying to win the league again.’

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