Newtongrange Star’s Junior Ground played host to this weekend’s Scottish Youth Cup semi-final, as Rossvale made to journey from Dumbartonshire to play Edinburgh to play Hutchinson vale for a spot in the final at Airdrie. With an expectant crowd standing under the scorching weather, the tie had lots of promise.
The early stages were frantic, as both sides struggled to hold onto the ball for a sustained period of time, until the fifth minute. The free-kick from 25 yards was played short to Harry Davidson who rifled in the shot, but Luke Main in the Rossvale goals held strong and caught with both hands. This was to be the repeated action for Hutchie in the following minutes, as the tricky Aidan Cross continued to win free-kicks with his clever footwork, the Rossvale defence couldn’t live with him in the opening stages.
Owen Bryce was next to test the keeper for Hutchie with a set-piece on 11 minutes, some slick thinking saw the free-kick worked quickly and incisively to Bryce, but the midfielder’s effort was comfortably saved in the end. Rossvale had to wait their chance for an opening, and they were within inches of getting it in the 14th minute; as they broke from the free-kick, Lewis Wilson outpaced the back-line, but Ciaran Cairns looked to have saved his effort, until the rebound came back off Wilson. It looked destined to roll into the net, but Michael Reilly thought otherwise as he stormed back like a freight train and cleared it off the line.
Minutes later the home side came close to opening the scoring, as Leno De Gaetano chested down a ball over the top, the control was excellent but the finish didn’t match it, and his effort trickled wide. The Hutchie chances continued, and Bryce had two effort to open his account. The first came on 21 minutes, as he outpaced the defenders and only had Main to beat, but his touch was too heavy and it gave the keeper a chance to clear.
Rossvale were soaking up the pressure and came within inches of scoring against the run of play on 33 minutes. The first chance fell to Luke McNiven, whose shot would have surely found the net if it wasn't for a last-ditch tackle from Luis Malcolm to force the corner. The resulting ball in found Finlay Kane, but he was more like Harry Kane as his effort crashed against the bar, after a wonder save from Cairns tipped the ball onto the woodwork and out for another corner.