A warm sunny evening at Saughton Enclosure was the host to the Evening News Under 16's Division 1 League Cup final between Hutchison Vale and Tynecastle. After a dismal first half, Hutchie took the lead with just over 10 minutes of the match remaining through Cameron McAlpine. However, with less than 5 minutes to go, Bradley Sinclair got on the end of a poor punch out from Hutchie keeper Byron Gibb to level the scores. Late, late into extra time, Sinclair squeezed between the Huctchie centre halves to run clear and slot the ball across Gibb to give Tynie the victory.
The first chance of the match fell to Tynie, and it was Sinclair who got on the end of Sonny Swanson's through ball. The frontman just overran the ball allowing Byron Gibb to slide out to block the goalbound effort.
Hutchie responded straight away with an attack of their own, and Sam Birch was allowed to run across the pitch, in order to spread the ball wide to left back Lewis Swaney. His first time cross to Gabri Auriemma at the back post was inch perfect as Tynecastle's Daryl Henderson missed the header. Auriemma's first touch was superb, and his toe poked effort towards goal beat Kieren Ross, but the covering Daniel Matthews was on hand to block the ball on the line, and prevent Hutchie from opening the scoring. A superb piece of defending from the commanding centre half.
Tynie set pieces were proving difficult for Hutchie to deal with. The latest from Daniel Headspeath wide on the left was towards Sinclair. His first touch to turn Cameron Begbie was exquisite, 1 on 1 with Gibb, but dragged his shot wide.
Once again, a Headspeath free kick was won by a Tynie player in the box, Aaron Nugent this time. His knockdown fell to Kacper Korpalksi, but the defenders volley was wide of the post. Tynie knocking on the door.
Hutchie's Kieren Young's run through the middle of the pitch concluded with an effort on goal 20 yards out, which was parried by Ross into the path of Stewart Johnston, but the winger couldn't find the right ball across the box and was cleared by Matthews.
Hutchie were beginning to get a foothold in the match, and the latest in a sequence of Auriemma corners was spilled by Ross, producing an old fashioned mass goalmouth "stramash" with plenty of players attacking the ball with all parts of their body, before Cal Sheridan looked to have found space to head the ball in, but Matthews through his leg infront of it to divert the ball over the bar to keep the scoreline level.
There were no more chances in the first half, but Tynie were forced to take off set piece specialist Headspeath as he was perhaps over committed in his tackles, and was on a yellow card when Tynie made the sub.