Caberfeidh 4 – 0 Camanachd Leodhais
Camanachd Leodhais were again followed by a large travelling support for the comparative short hop skip and jump to Strathpeffer to play Caberfeidh.
Na Leodhasaich travelled with a squad of 17, with veteran Crawford MacLellan making his first appearance of the season despite having done the 22 mile Culloden night march before. Lewis started sprightly but a looping ball from the right wing deflected off MacLellan and fell to Gary MacLennan who scored a sublime first time volley from a tight angle into the top corner. A goal worthy of gracing the Camanachd Cup final but the islanders had again lost an early goal which has been a feature of their season.
Cabers had almost constant pressure for the first half but Lewis stayed steadfast, with all four defenders making last ditch tackles and Conor MacDonald having his best game all season between the sticks.
MacLellan’s night march had obviously tired him out and MacLennan was pulling the strings for Cabers and the second goal after 35 minutes resulted from this avenue, the opening scorer running through, MacDonald having to come off his line and MacLennan tipping the ball off to the clinical Kirk Taylor. Sadly for Lewis this came just after a rare period of pressure which had culminated in Anndra MacEannraig passing up a gilt edged opportunity in front of goals.
MacDonald then made a brilliant reflex stick save from Taylor at point blank range.
In the moments before halftime, Eoghan Stewart made a last ditch tackle on Ruairidh McCready which resulted in the big Gaelic teacher being severely winded but with no serious damage done and able to continue at the back.
However, from the resulting throwup the ball was popped out by Micheal MacDonald for a corner. The ball came in and Gallagher gave Taylor a little too much room and from 30 yards he made no mistake. Cabers had been profligate through the first half to the frustration of their fans so the score line did not please either side.
The second half was a slow affair, with Cabers blooding some youngsters and the islanders struggling to create anything up front, particularly after a head injury to Donald Lamont. Thankfully for the Rubhach his telegenic looks were unharmed despite it being a serious blow
The only addition to the scoring was from a very contentious penalty given by referee Willie MacRae in the 82nd minute for an alleged kick by MacLellan. MacLennan converted and the game was brought to a close.
Despite being on the back foot for almost the whole game, Leodhas drew some plaudits from the home side for their organisation as team. Scott Murray in particular impressed the watching crowd with his fitness and hitting at full centre.
Player-manager Paul Duke had this to say: “It was a good shinty lesson and although we didn’t play as well as we could we came out against a strong team with a reasonable result. It was a physical game but thankfully Eoghan and Donald seem to be all right. We had a full bench yet again and unfortunately I wasn’t able to give Daniel MacFadden a début. He’s a real star of the future.”
Next up for Lewis is the last of their long run of away games, against Inverness at the Bught Park on the 30th of April.