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South East Region (381)

The contest between Division 1’s last unbeaten teams concluded with Edinburgh City Blacks victorious, overcoming an early deficit to defeat Leith Athletic 2-1. Gavin Mabon’s second half goal, slotted home just after the hour, was the difference in a match of thin margins.

It was not a result that had looked overly likely in an opening twenty minutes in which Leith were on top. Three early strikes at goal - from Cameron Kerr, Rory Hunter, and Robbie King - produced just a single save from Blacks keeper Alistair Corbet, but Leith were not in the mood to be denied. In the 13th minute King lined up another shot, left-footed and from 20 yards, that found the top left corner.

With wide forwards Kerr and Sulaiman Ashraf supporting Hunter, and midfielders King and Cameron Stewart pushed up to block any out balls, Athletic had Blacks pinned back. However, a move in the 20th minute suggested Blacks were devising a solution. A stretch from Keiran Miller suddenly put the ball beyond the Leith press, with Jack Mathison free down the left. He in turn found Evan Gillespie in the box, but his effort rolled wide of the right hand post.

This was a catalyst for a more even affair. For Leith, King shot over and Kerr drove a ball across the six yard box; Mathison’s snap shot for Blacks was held by Athletic’s Jamie Smith. Then, in an instant, Blacks were level. Mathison did well on the left to get the ball in towards the six yard line, to where Max Clark had crept completely unnoticed. One touch, 1-1, and half-time approaching.

Edinburgh City were left stunned as Currie Star came from two down to snatch a late winner and to progress to the second round of the Peter O’Neill Cup at Forrester High School.

City, without a point in the league at this stage, started brightly raced into an early two goal lead; although the away side grabbed one back before the break Shane Majekodunmi.

The signs were there at the end of the first half that the second period was to be a different story - and it was, as Currie turned what was a 3-1 deficit at one point into a victory.

Billy Birks took a high foot to the face a few minutes in, as the wind blew heavily during the first half. From the resulting free kick, Ethan Johnston bent the ball around the wall and forced keeper Danny Hyslop to parry. A goal-line scrap followed before the ball was eventually turned over the line, with Georgie Jackson claiming it.

The second came on 14 minutes when a cross came over from the left was misjudged, perhaps due to the wind, by Hyslop and as a result, gifted Jack Stewart the chance: who swivelled to convert from close range.

The visitors managed to claw one back nine minutes later though. James Hunt turned smartly and found Max MacKay on the edge of the box. His shot was parried out by goalkeeper Ethan McCarthy and the ball was tappedin, despite appeals for offside, by Majekodunmi.

Bar the three goals, there wasn’t a great deal of quality in the first half. There were a few wayward efforts from distance from both sides but none to trouble the goalkeeper as the game came to half time.

Portobello got off to a dream start in their division one campaign with a narrow victory over Lasswade Thistle to earn a hard fought three points at Portobello High.

The conditions were grim from the get-go but that didn’t hamper the football in the first half. Thistle took the early lead but yet found themselves trailing by the break. Farrell Bain sealed the deal in a not-so-exciting second period as the home side hung on to claim victory.

The game started as a relatively open encounter: Thistle were looking to play from the back, but had to negotiate through the Portobello press. It only took five minutes for the opener to come, throught the source of Bayley Klimionek, who swept home with his left foot after Bailey Mckenzie had his initial effort saved.

It very nearly became two for the visitors as Mckenzie again raced in on goal after a tidy stepover, but Josh Ingles managed to throw his body in the way of it. At the other end, Max Evans headed Stevie Renton’s corner back across to Finlay Yule, but the forward could only hit the goalkeeper with his strike.

The equaliser came on 19 minutes as Renton sliced open the Thistle backline to pick out Evans. The wideman did the rest as he controlled with his first touch before firing across the body of Joshua Lothian and into the far corner.

Seven minutes later and Porty had turned the score on its head as Yule picked out Renton on a breakaway. The midfielder opted to hit it early – which turned out to be the right call as the ball squirmed underneath Lothian before dribbling over the line.

Yet Lasswade refused to lie down and a nice pass found its way to the feet of Ben Richardson, who did the rest as he slotted underneath Rory Comerford to level the score once more.

Less than a minute later Yule was in behind the Thistle backline but his touch was heavy which gave Lothian the chance to rush out and win the ball. However his challenge only made it as far as Renton, who only had on thing in his mind as he cracked the ball home from the edge of the area.

One final chance fell to the visitors before the interval, and perhaps one that Mckenzie would have taken if it wasn’t for Paul Serpenskas, who managed to get his body in and ease the forward out. That was to be the final action in an enthralling first half.

Two first half goals were enough for Hutchison Vale to survive a second half onslaught from Musselburgh Windsor and hold on to lift the Kenny McLean Cup.

A goal at the start of the half from Jake Houten and a stunner a few minutes before half time from Jacob Comerford put Vale in the driving seat, but the second period was a different story and saw Windsor give them a real run for their money.

Bruno Davidson won the ball in his own half and strode forwards, before feeding the ball into the path of Houten. The striker kept his cool from close range to stab past Lennon Flood and give Vale an early lead.

Taylor Steven went close with a couple of efforts for Vale, Lewis Foster headed wide from a set piece before Davidson dragged wide across the face.

The second was a thing of beauty on 32 minutes. Malik Zaid’s initial strike was blocked but the ball sat up nicely for Comerford, who couldn’t have struck the ball any sweeter as it flew off his left foot and nestled perfectly into the corner ot double the score.

There was a half chance for Windsor as Ross Montgomery found Murray Gilfillan but the attcker lashed wide on the half volley, just before the half time whistle sounded.

Lanarkshire Hibs ran out deserved winners in a game of few chances in the SWF South East League Cup Final. The game was played at Ainslie Park where a passionate crowd watched the encounter unfold.

There were some special moments throughout the match, including Hibs' Jenna Woods' storming run through the defence to calmly finish, and Freyja Bjarnason's incredible lob late on in the second half.

The first half went as many would have expected from a cup final, with both teams just getting to terms with the other. It was a very scrappy opening 25 minutes as Hibs lead the way by way of possession and attacking intent.

The first real chance did fall the way of Lanarkshire Hibs after 12 minutes as tricky Midfielder Caitlin Moran was found in acres of space after an inswinging Hibs corner, however the No.19 failed to hit the target.

Hibs continued to dominate procedings and continued to pile on the pressure, with No.7 Rachael Graham the next to have an attempt, her shot was smartly saved by Windsor 'keeper Alicia Burns.

Hibs eventually found their deserved breakthrough after a killer ball from Caitlin Moran found the feet of Jenna Woods, who calmly slotted home to give Hibs the lead.

Musselburgh Windsor knew they needed to respond and very nearly did so through Zuzia Olesiejuk, after a misplaced backpass from Hibs defender Nikki Simonette, Olesiejuk chased down the loose ball which was just about gathered by Hibs No.1 Ellie Dickson.

Going into the Half-Time period Hibs lead the Cup Final tie 0-1 thanks to that goal from Jenna Woods.

A late goal from Taylor Steven was enough for Hutchison Vale to secure the John Crawford cup against Tynecastle, in a hotly contested affair.

Hutchison were the first to threaten in the final when talented winger Bruno Davidson showed some terrific skill down the left-wing and managed to find Lewis Foster whose low driven shot struck the post and went out of play in the first minute of the match. Hutchison continued their pressure, this time in the form of a long-ranged Jacob Comerford strike in the second minute of the match which sailed over the bar.

Tynecastle had their first real chance of the game when Corin Brown managed to get on the end of a Samuel Nicolson cross, but saw his header go just over the bar in the 10th minute. Tynecastle had another great chance to go ahead in the 13th minute when Brown was played in again but was denied by a superb stop from close-range by Hutchison keeper Ruairidh Adams.

Tynecastle threatened again in this end-to-end affair when Brown once again created another chance but saw his half-volley fly over the bar in the 18th minute. Hutchison were the next to go forward when defender Rhyad Jelly had his header denied by a fantastic save from Tynecastle keeper Josh Philip in the 26th minute.

Steven had a great chance to put Hutchison ahead in the 32nd minute when his powerful effort was once again denied by the strong hands of Philip who parried the effort out for a corner. The deadlock was finally broken from the resulting corner when after a series of unsuccessful clearances from the Tynecastle defence, Jelly found the ball fall to his fight and proceeded to rifle the ball into the top-right corner putting his team in a winning position going into the second half.

Thursday, 07 June 2018 16:13

Newtongrange Star lift 4th Division Cup

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Penalty practice paid off for Newtongrange Star as they won the Division 4 League Cup final. Both sides battled exceptionally well, however it was Star who managed to edge a close game and lift the silverware.

Both teams were confident ahead of kick-off, however Cavalry Park had the best of the opening spell. Firstly, ten minutes in, Robertson-Walker found Eddie Bain at the edge of the box. Bain controlled and his low effort was well saved by Rian Young. Then, a few minutes later, Jordan Dobbie drove forward and fired a shot inches wide of the left-hand post.

The next 20 minutes did not produce much in the way of chances, as the game descended into a midfield battle. However, just before half-time Newtongrange Star hit the woodwork twice in five minutes.

Ben Whitecross delivered a free-kick to into the box which was met by Jordan Dobbie. His volley then clipped the outside of the post before going behind. Then, five minutes later, it was Lochlann Bernard’s turn to come close. Bernard’s cross was clipped into the box, but he over-hit his delivery, as the ball flew onto the crossbar before bouncing out.

With this effort, the first half drew to a close, with the scores level at 0-0.

A superb hattrick from Craig Ferrier and goals from Michael Shaw and Ryan Farrall were enough for Leith to take silverware home in a hard-fought match.

Tynecastle were the first to threaten in the final, when Elliot Ferrier was played through for a one-on-one against Leith keeper Adam Mclean in the seventh minute but saw his placed finish cannon back off the post and prevent Tynecastle from taking an early lead. Leith went on the counter-attack which resulted in Tynecastle keeper Mitchell Haddow pulling off a brilliant save from close range to deny Lee Griffin the first goal of the game.

Ferrier came close to getting his first of the evening when his long-ranged effort sailed over the bar in the ninth minute of the match. Tynecastle threatened next in the 10th minute, when tricky winger Daniel Purves jinked past the opposing fullback and shot from a tight angle which was smartly denied by McLean.

Leith went onto finally break the deadlock in this tense cup final in the 13th minute when Shaw picked up the ball out on the left wing and smashed a perfect low-driven shot past Haddow and putting his side in front at Ainslie park.  

Leith soon after doubled their cup final lead when Ferrier cut onto to his powerful left foot and struck a mean shot towards goal which a Haddow fingertip was not enough to prevent Leith from going two ahead in the 19th minute.

After a short toilet break for the linesman, Tynecastle went forward again as Purves was unlucky not to have pulled one back for his side as he caused havoc down the right-wing for the disciplined Leith defence and found his shot, once again from a tight angle and hit the side netting in the 20th minute. Tynecastle were at it again in their chase for cutting the deficit, when Elliot Ferrier had his long-ranged effort comfortably saved by McLean in the 30th minute.

Leith were unfortunate not to get a third when defender Liam Reid climbed the highest at a corner but found his header just glance over the bar in the 32nd minute. Andrew Dempster was the next to attempt to get a third for Leith, as he curled free-kick was smartly denied by Haddow, in the 40th minute.

A late flurry of chances was seen for Tynecastle as they pushed to close the gap between the two sides going into the second half. Jack Enguidanos threatened from distance, but saw his effort blaze over the bar in the 42nd minute. However, the chance of the half fell to Tynecastle’s number 10 Russel Cairns, as he was played through up against McLean who stood tall for the first effort and Cairns got a second chance through the rebound which glanced off the post in the 44th minute and ended up being the climax of the first half.

Ross high battled back from behind to triumph over Royal High in extra time and lift the Edinburgh Secondary Schools FA cup at Meggetland.

In the initial phases, the game was played at a high tempo and both sides were looking to create chances with Athan Barry going close for Royal High, and soon after Tyler Pryde almost latched onto a ball over the top.

Esosa Osemwegie had a crack from distance but he cut across the ball and sliced off target, and Lennon Garrick had a couple of attempts from wide right; the first was blocked and the second dribbled of target.

Barry nicked the ball from the toes of a defender but couldn’t pull the trigger in time as Lennon Rafferty raced back to put him off. Soon after, the Tranent side began to build their own spell of pressure.

Mackenzie Scott had a few chances, the latter of which he lashed over the crossbar from the edge of the area. Pryde managed to get in behind on 25 minutes but Jack Roy was down well to turn behind.

As Ross continuted to turn the screw, the next chance fell to Callum Anderson, but he couldn’t connect to Pryde’s cross from close range.

The final chance of the half fell to Barry, who was slipped in by Gregor Fordyce, but the attacker couldn’t prod the ball beyond the onrushing goalkeeper, as the sides went into the break, goalless.

Strathy McKay's wondergoal, moments before the final whistle, was all there was to separate Leith Athletic and Edinburgh City, and see the former lift the Federation of Hearts Supporters cup.

The game started out at a high tempo: Leith looking to play out through City’s high press; and although quality chances were at a premium, there were plenty willing to try their luck from range.

That is, after James Farrell glanced a header a few inches wide of the far post from a corner in the opening minute. Charlie Craig blazed over on the half volley before Leith’s Ethan Wynne had a pop on the counter; but a deflection took the sting out of the strike.

And that’s just to name a few chances that went begging.

Leith began to turn the screw and and Rory Hunter went near with his head: diverting Thomas Ramage’s tempting cross goalward – but it narrowly evaded the far post.

He would soon have a second chance as Wynne raced forward on the counter. The ball fell to Hunter’s feet but Jonathan Steel was quick to block his effort.

More wayward efforts and crunching challenges were to follow and these were becoming somewhat reccurring themes as the half developed.

Cameron Stewart and Euan Howie of Leith both saw efforts rise over the crossbar from the edge of the area before Strathy McKay dragged a shot past the near post from the right.

In the midst of this, another half-chance fell the way of Hunter – but from close range he could only head wide.

The last action of the half was to be provided by a corner that evaded Leith Goalkeeper. There was a scramble for the ball, with a city player on the deck as Leith ushered the ball to safety. They weren’t to know the referee had already blown for a freekick on their favour – as the sides went in goalless at the break.

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