BUCKIE Thistle boss Graeme Stewart has backed his side to go all the way in the Highland League Cup after edging out Fraserburgh on penalties to reach the semi-finals.
The quarter-final tie at Victoria Park finished 1-1 after 120 minutes, but the Jags prevailed 5-4 in the shoot-out.
Buckie join Formartine United, Brora Rangers and Rothes in the last four and Stewart reckons they can go further.
He said: “It was a tight game which I think we just edged and we would have been disappointed to lose on penalties.
“Fraserburgh have beaten us three times this season. Hopefully this can be a turning point for us and it would have been a kick in the guts to lose because I felt we deserved it.
“It’s a bit of a monkey off the back for us and I know this team can go to the next level because we’ve got young, hungry players.
“But to reach the next level and win trophies you have to beat teams like Fraserburgh.
“I think we can go all the way, but it’s four good teams in the semi-finals. Hopefully we can get through to the final.”
The best chance of the first half fell for Fraserburgh with Paul Campbell’s header from Ryan Cowie’s right-wing cross hitting the base of the left post.
Early in the second period the Jags came close with Scott Adams’ 25-yarder flashing wide and Kyle Macleod’s overhead kick blocked.
At the other end Owen Cairns shot wide from 15 yards and with 11 minutes left referee Filippo Mazzoni waved away a strong penalty claim when Scott Barbour was grounded by a Hamish Munro challenge.
In the 100th minute Jags sub Callum MURRAY fired them in front after racing on to Hamish Munro’s through ball, but two minutes later Willie WEST forced home Ryan Cowie’s free-kick to equalise.
In the shoot-out Macleod, Munro, Andy MacAskill, Jack Murray and Sam Morrison scored for Buckie.
Campbell, Sean Butcher, Gary Harris and West converted for Fraserburgh, but Lee Herbert’s save from Kieran Simpson sent the Jags through.
Broch manager Mark Cowie said: “We’re gutted. Buckie dominated the first half and we didn’t start the game well.
“We came into it in the second half and I felt in extra-time we were fitter, but we didn’t manage to create the opening we needed.
“Fair play to Buckie, their five penalties were excellent and most of ours were as well. Penalties is always a lottery.
“I think Scott Barbour’s appeal was a penalty – I think everybody in the ground thought that other than the referee.
“He tried to stay on his feet because he was through on goal.
“Scott is a striker that craves goals and if he has the chance to score he’ll try everything to take it.
“So that’s why I think he was fouled. He doesn’t go down unless it’s a stonewaller.”