Shinty: Premiership champions Newtonmore best Lovat in MacTavish Cup

By Charles BannermanBBC Scotland
Kingussie and Fort William
Kingussie defeated Fort William at the Dell

Newtonmore served further notice that they will be a major force again this season as the Premiership champions brushed aside Camanachd Cup holders Lovat 3-0 at the Eilan in the day's top MacTavish Cup first-round tie.

On a Saturday when the card suffered heavily from waterlogged pitches, Badenoch was largely unaffected and at the Dell, Kingussie's resurgence continued when they progressed 1-0 at the expense of Fort William.

The other all-Premiership MacTavish tie was at Spean Bridge where a late surge saw Lochaber beat Kinlochshiel 4-2, also to reach the last eight of the North area championship.

The only other MacTavish survivor was the clash at Bught Park, Inverness where Beauly inflicted a 4-0 defeat on their National Division rivals from the Highland capital.

The one tie which went ahead in the GCC Celtic Society Cup, the South area championship, only did so when the venue was switched to Col Glen where the new home side ousted Ballachulish 3-1.

In the encounter between shinty's two main title holders, Newtonmore came flying out of the traps and were 2-0 up within 10 minutes with goals from Fraser MacKintosh and Evan Menzies. Glen MacKintosh made it 3-0 just before half-time but in the second half More were unable to increase their advantage over Lovat, who are not only Camanachd Cup holders but also won the MacTavish in 2013 and 2014.

Meanwhile, it was very different three miles away in Kingussie where the first half came and went without a goal and there were just over 10 minutes left when Chris Hollysong made the decisive strike. This was Kingussie's second 1-0 home win over Fort William in two weeks following an earlier league encounter.

At Spean Bridge, Kevin Ferguson scored the only goal of the first half for Lochaber before Gordie MacDonald equalised early in the second. A double from Stuart Callison then put Lochaber well in charge before MacDonald's second sealed it, with Finlay MacRae's late goal too little and too late to save Shiel.

Four different players scored for Beauly at Inverness with Jack MacDonald and Sandy Elrick striking in the first half while Connor Ross and Robbie Brindle matched that in the second.

Holders Glenurquhart were one of three clubs with first-round byes.

Col Glen's scorers in the Celtic Society Cup were Steven Mackellar, Iain Wilson and Hamish Harrison while the consolation for Ballachulish, who had John MacDonald sent off, was a Cally McNaughton own goal.

The South's two Premiership clubs, Kyles and Oban Camanachd, enter the competition at the next stage.

The top scoreline of the day was Aberdeen University's 9-0 eclipse of Glengarry in North Division Two where Stuart Cameron got four goals and Ewen Fraser scored a hat-trick for the rampant students.