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Dyce played host to Gow Valley in the glorious Ellon sunshine this afternoon in the Quarter Final of the SYFA Cup. The visitors trailed for most of the game thanks to a freak own goal, but levelled late on to take the game into extra time before Dyce eventually triumphed on penalties.
Gow started the better of the two teams and went close in the 7th minute. Fraser Allan curled a free kick into the box where Jamie MacDonald rose highest and tested the keeper with a decent header. Two minutes later Valley’s Scott Thomson went on a driving run at the Dyce defence. Starting in his own half he battled his way right to the by-line and won a corner. And it was Thomson again getting on the end of the corner kick and going close with a shot on the turn.
The home side had their first half chance 11 minutes in when Josh Milne headed wide from a corner. In the 25th minute a superb challenge from Dyce’s Cory Ritchie on the halfway line prevented a dangerous looking Valley break.
On the half hour mark Dyce took the lead in bizarre circumstances. Gow Valley had possession in defence with no imminent danger, but an attempted clearance cannoned off the unfortunate Dylan Hollands and looped back over the keeper’s head into the goal.
In stoppage time at the end of the first half a snap shot from the Valley number 4, Lee Stubbs, was blocked in the box. Moments later at the other end, Josh Milne looked to be through on goal but keeper, Kieran Craw, was out of his goal quickly to clear the danger.
Half Time: Dyce BC 1-0 Gow Valley
There were early chances in the second half for Milne for Dyce and Kian Adams for Gow, both forcing the keepers to make saves. In the 42nd minute a Gow corner swung in with pace was fumbled by the Dyce number 1. Amid the ensuing stramash there were some claims that the ball had crossed the line but the referee waved play on.
On 47 minutes Josh Milne went on a terrific run from his own half, leaving three Valley players in his wake he burst into the box but sliced his shot high and wide. Four minutes later the visitors went close when Jamie MacDonald curled an ambitious effort just wide of the top corner.
In the 58th minute a cutback from Kian Adams found substitute Connor McGrane who crashed his shot off the crossbar from close range. The south Lanarkshire club were really pushing for an equaliser at this stage, with wave after wave of attack. As the game entered its last 10 minutes Jamie MacDonald flashed a header just past the post.
With just four minutes to go Gow Valley finally breeched the home side’s defence and levelled the match. A ball in from the left landed at the feet of Connor McGrane who took a touch to control the ball before blasting high past the helpless Morgan Cook in goals, sparking wild celebrations in the away dugout.
In the 69th minute Milne was almost in for Dyce, but once again the Gow keeper was alert to the danger and came out of his goal quickly to clear in the last action of normal time.
Full Time: Dyce BC 1-1 Gow Valley
Extra time was end to end without either team creating too many clear cut chances. The only real chance of the first half fell to Gow’s Thomson, whose low drive brought a good save from Cook. With three minutes until the dreaded penalty shootout, Josh Milne showed tremendous pace to leave two Gow defenders for dead, the striker’s shot had the keeper beaten but came off the bar and was cleared. After a full 90 minutes the sides could not be separated, so penalty kicks it was.
Valley were up first but Morgan Cook made an easy save with the penalty going straight down the middle. Craig Gill stepped forward for Dyce and confidently dispatched the spot kick to give his side the lead.
Valley’s next penalty rattled the bar and bounced out, giving Cory Ritchie the chance to put Dyce 2-0 up, which he coolly did. Remarkably Gow then missed their third penalty, meaning Josh Milne, who hit the bar in stoppage time, had the chance to score the winning penalty. But he blasted the spot kick off the very same crossbar again! Valley had to score their next penalty but the ball rolled agonisingly wide of Cook’s right-hand post, meaning Dyce go through 2-0 on penalties and will face Albion in the semi final.
Final Result: Dyce BC 1-1 Gow Valley (Dyce win 2-0 on penalties)