Published: 19/03/2017 06:47 - Updated: 19/03/2017 07:09

Staggies' late show as Schalk makes point in Highland derby clash

A cool finish from Alex Schalk secured a draw for County against Inverness
A cool finish from Alex Schalk secured a draw for County against Inverness

A LATE strike from Alex Schalk rescued an important point for Ross County in Saturday's Highland derby.

The Dutchman's 86th minute goal in Inverness ensured a share of the spoils and denied Inverness Caledonian Thistle the opportunity to come within a point of their Highland rivals.

Greg Tansey had opened the scoring for Caley Thistle shortly after the break with a shot that took a heavy defelection off Marcus Fraser.

Schalk, who has a happy habit of scoring important goals, levelled it up just before the end with a coolly finished shot which found the far corner of the net.

Although the draw will feel like a defeat for the home side - who have yet to register a win over Ross County this season - the Staggies will look to a solid penalty claim denied when Schalk appeared to be impeded and a Craig Curran miss from close range.

The draw leaves County ninth in the Scottish Premiership, four points clear of bottom placed Hamilton, thumped 4-0 by Rangers on Saturday. ICT's silver lining is to escape the bottom spot, albeit on goal difference. They sit on 24 points with Hamilton.

Tenth-placed Motherwell are just a point behind County, doutbless leaving the Dingwall club determined to start registering some wins to pull clear of the relegation zone.

Elsewhere, Aberdeen defeated Hearts to stay eight points clear of Rangers second behind champions-elect, Celtic.

Kilmarnock and Partick Thistle played out a draw and St Johnstone climbed back into fourth slot with victory at Motherwell.

Full report and reaction in next week's Ross-shire Journal.

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