Inverurie Locos were held to a 1-1 draw by Rothes in an entertaining encounter at Harlaw Park.
Locos led through Robert Ward’s superb 18th minute strike but the Speysiders battled back with Fraser Robertson heading home a 52nd minute equaliser on a night when both teams retained their unbeaten records.
Inverurie Locos’ new manager, former Caley Thistle defender and ex-Canadian international Richard Hastings, was watching from the stand with interim boss Steven Park remaining in the dugout.
Locos left skipper Neil McLean on the bench along with former Huntly and Formartine United striker Gary McGowan, who had joined Locos from Banks o’ Dee earlier in the day.
Locos 1-1 Rothes
Fraser Robertson with the Rothes goal pic.twitter.com/6yOAH6b4VV
— Rothes FC (@RothesFC) August 25, 2021
Locos opened the scoring in the 18th minute when Ward’s 20-yard strike beat Sean McCarthy and went into the net off the underside of the crossbar.
Just before the break a Calum Dingwall header from a corner was cleared off the line by Rothes midfielder Roberston as Locos looked to press home their advantage.
In the 52nd minute Rothes equalised when Andy Reid could only parry a ferocious Greg Morrison effort and Robertson was on-hand to head home the rebound.
Afterwards Hastings said: “I’m really excited to get going.
“Obviously it wasn’t the win we wanted but it was an end-to-end affair and I thought we acquitted ourselves well in the first half.
“Robert Ward took his goal well. He’s got real pace and he’s a hard man to mark, that’s for sure. In the end both sides remain unbeaten, I always thought that we needed that second goal, it never came and that leaves the door open.”
Deveronvale 3-3 Huntly
Deveronvale produced a storming comeback to earn a point against Huntly in a six goal thriller.
The visitors went ahead after 16 minutes when Reece McKeown’s driven cross was turned beyond Sean McIntosh by Angus Grant.
Gavin Elphinstone made it two six minutes later when he slotted home from an Alex Thoirs pass.
On the half hour mark Vale were awarded a penalty when Euan Storrier was adjudged to have fouled Dane Ballard but the keeper saved Ross Aitken’s spot kick before the home skipper fired home the rebound.
Huntly restored their two goal advantage a minute from the break as Grant grabbed his second after skipping through a couple of challenges before stroking the ball into an empty net.
Vale got back into the game after 64 minutes when Aitken’s 25 yard shot hit the underside of the bar before hitting the back of the Huntly keeper and rolling across the line.
Ballard levelled things up after 78 minutes when he met the ball at the near post from Sam Robertson’s cross and Grant Noble almost put Vale ahead but fired over the bar from ten yards.
Turriff storm back; Keith claim first win
Turriff United fought from 3-0 down to earn a point against Strathspey Thistle at The Haughs.
The Jags, who beat Lossiemouth 3-1 on Saturday, made the perfect start when Andrew Skinner converted a penalty after only two minutes.
It got even better for Charlie Brown’s side when James McShane doubled the advantage after 14 minutes.
Strathspey surged further ahead in the 58th minute with Skinner netting his second spot-kick of the game but Turriff fought back with James Chalmers reducing the deficit before two late goals from Matthew McDonald gave Dean Donaldson’s side an unlikely point.
Elsewhere, Keith claimed their first win of the season with a 2-0 victory against Wick at Kynoch Park.
The visitors, who had manager Gary Manson sent off after 31 minutes, fell behind to a Przemyslaw Nawrocki penalty a minute before the break.
And Michael Selfridge netted the second, also from the spot, with eight minutes to go to make sure of the win with Wick ending the match with 10 men after a late red card for Ross Allan.
Meanwhile, Nairn County’s Highland League match against Fort William was postponed due to a Covid outbreak at Fort.
The Claggan Park side were due to make the trip to Station Park in Nairn for the game but announced they were unable to field a team.
A statement from the club read: “We are disappointed that we are unable to fulfil the fixture, however health and safety must be our main priority.”