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South West Region (174)


Prestayr Thistle FC
KSC Pheonix
Under-15 David McNaught Cup
29 March 2014
The match started fairly even in this David McNaught cup tie, however after patient build up play around the 10 minute mark Phoenix had their coaches brimming with pride, Barcaesque is the only way to explain the sublime passing phase which lead to the first goal.

With the ball cooly pulled out of the air on the halfway line by Phoenix's Influential winger come striker for the day Ryan Strain he cooly threaded the ball throughout to his strike partner Jamie Lyndsey who again as he has done so many times the last few weeks picked out the onward running Phoenix wide boy Morgan Loudon who cooly took the ball in his stride, with his first touch teeing him up to calmly slot the ball under the descending Prestayr number 1 Ewan Smith, a real classy move from front to back proper text book.

With Loudon hungry for more it wouldn't be long before he was latching onto another ball threaded through the Prestayr rearguard, this time Strain being the provider.

At 2-0 there looked no way back KSC were dominating the play, however one high ball over the top did nearly catch out the Phoenix back line, however the referee was well positioned to call the off side.

A few moments later another attack was on with the ball played down the Phoenix right, the Phoenix fullback provided a high ferocious ball into the box with the Prestayr centre back the odds on winner for clearing however up jumps KSCs number 9 Ryan Strain with a sublime glancing header into the far top right corner, a great individual goal which had the side lines in praise.

Phoenix continued used to press for another before the break, next up was Lafferty who was harshly pulled back by Prestayrs Captain who evidently nearly ripped the sleeve of his jersey off, this moment of madness would see Prestayrs Captain booked and rightly so..
Half Time: Prestayr Thistle 0-3 KSC Pheonix
The first 5 minutes of the second half saw Phoenix start as they'd finished the first half, again it was Phoenix play maker Josh Lafferty who weaved himself into the box, the result he was brought to ground with a swift sweep of his legs by the fullback, a cert of a penalty however much to every ones disbelief the Phoenix number 11 saw himself in the book for diving, quite incredible, even the coaching staff on the adjacent pitch were laughing at this decision, quite incredible!

This booking would see a ten minute slump from Phoenix, and as a result they would see themselves punished at the other end, this time a penalty for the home side. It must be said yes it was a penalty however very soft in comparison the earlier shout.

Prestayr would take advantage from their spot kick and saw a small window to claw themselves back into the match, 3-1 game on. With the next goal vital we would have to wait until the last 8 minutes, with Phoenix looking happy to see the game out they made all five substitutions with only one of them enforced due to a suspected fractured wrist of Lewis Gardiner, who it must be said showed great commitment in seeing the first half out with his injury.

Prestayr opted for three at the back in order to try and get their second of the match, however the Phoenix rearguard stood tall and proved an extremely challenging wall to breach.

As a result Phoenix found the space on the break with a neat ball through the middle by Logan Craig picked out Lafferty who riffled a shot from 20 Yards into the top right corner 4-1 and game by you felt, however there was to be further drama, this time with Phoenix centre back Logan Craig driving into the box only to be tripped as he pulled the trigger, again another soft penalty in comparison to the earlier incident. However up stepped Loudon for his hattrick, not the coolest of penalties however a hattrick nonetheless.

With only minutes remaining Prestayr to their credit continued to see it out competitively with the last phase of play resulting in another soft penalty, up stepped the same player who bagged the first for the home side, however despite executing with power Phoenix number 1 Murray Grayston tipped over the bar! a fine save by the keeper. 
Full Time: Prestayr Thistle 1-5 KSC Pheonix
Thursday, 27 March 2014 10:34

Two out of two for KSC in McNaught Cup

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KSC Pheonix
Irvine Thistle
U15's David McNaught Cup - Group 1
27 March 2014
This fixture would see these two teams paired again for the second time this season despite playing in different divisions. The last encounter only a fortnight earlier saw a well under par Phoenix side stumble against their lower league opposition.
With the incentive there for the visitors could they take advantage over their ayrshire neighbours again for the second time in quick succession.
The last encounter saw Thistle capitalise on Phoenix's under par performance with a 2-1 victory in this years supplementary cup, however who would come up trumps today.
In what can only be described as a one sided match KSC Phoenix dominated from start to finish, Thistle did have there moments where an equaliser at 1-0 looked imminent however Phoenix held out before killing Irvine's hopes of a leveller in the dying minutes with a great counter attaching goal.
The match itself started of at a frantic pace with Thistle immediately on the back foot, ten minutes in and KSC were on their sixth corner of the match, however despite all the training ground practice at corners the ball ended up in the net straight from the kick by an audacious shot come cross by Phoenix wide boy Morgan Loudon, with Loudon claiming the goal as an accurate shot his team mates weren't so convinced. However Loudon was off in his customary celebratory run after bagging his wonder strike!
As the half wore on KSC continued to dominate with only some robust defending by Thistles rearguard keeping the score at 1-0, the occasional attack from Thistle came down their left side with Adam Boyd proving a handful for Phoenix's Craig Maxwell however the Phoenix fullback stood his ground well against thistles industrious winger.
Half Time: KSC 1-0 Irvine Thistle
Second half of this Davy McNaught cup tie started much like the first, however for a period in the second half perhaps Thistle felt they'd maybe done enough to pull level. One attacking phase led to a goal line clearance onto the bar with Irvine protesting the ball had crossed the line however the ref waived away their claims. 
This proved to be a mini catalyst with a few nervy moments for Phoenix's rearguard, however like any team in search of a leveller they leave themselves open to the counter and that's exactly what happened with Phoenix number 10 Josh Lafferty controlling the ball at the halfway line and driving into the area, quick feet saw him looses his man as he slid the ball back across the 6 yard box for an easy tap in by his strike colleague John Jamieson.
Full Time: KSC 2-0 Irvine Thistle


Stewarton Annick FC
 Valspar FC
U15's David McNaught Cup
20 March 2014
Following two narrow defeats to Stewarton previosuly, we were looking for some revenge this time.
We started the game very positive and took the game to Stewarton in the first half,the wind was a challenge but Valspar played some good passing flowing football creating some good chances early on, after 25 minutes the goal finally came after a lovely passing move with Ryan McCrone and Calum Walker which ended up with Calum calmly sliding the ball under the goalkeeper with his left foot from just inside the box.
Vaslpar had another couple of chances that went close from our strikers but against the run of play Stewarton equalised five minutes before half time.
Half Time: Valspar 1-1 Stewarton
The second half we tired and with three of the boys playing with the regional squad the night previous Stewarton came back into the game, for most of the early part of the half they had the better possession and played the better football , but defensively we were excellent both Lewis Hannah and Jack Haldin made some great challenges and goal saving clearances keeping us in the game.
After some changes we started to get more into their final third and when winning a corner from the right Calum Walker swung in a lovely in swinging cross which was met by Jack Haldin glances the ball into the top corner.
The last 15 minutes seemed to be a lot longer but we kept our defence unit tight and with some great forward play from Ross Connelly this kept us a threat when we went forward into the opposition half again having some chances to finish the game.
A good win and a well earned victory well deserved for our first half display and defensive performance.
Full Time: Valspar 2-1 Stewarton


KSC Pheonix
Caledonian Youth
U15's David McNaught Cup - Group 1
17 March 2014
With both sides having several key players playing for the South West Region the night before, there was to be no hangovers had within the Ranks as all players made their domestic clubs fixture after only a few hours rest.

Caley Youth opted to rest two of their regional boys from their starting line up perhaps given the short space between matches, however Phoenix saw their three as integral to the result they had hoped for.

This match really got of to a flyer with Caley Youth bringing the match to the home side in the opening 10 minutes, in fact the match up until this point was practically being played in the home sides half, surely there was no way Caley could sustain this tempo! thankfully for Phoenix they could not and as a result as we reached the midway point of the half KSC had stretched in front in terms of possession and goals. The first of which was result of some meet play down the left flank as the ball was flashed across the Caley penalty area by KSC number 10 Jamie Lyndsey, his in rushing strike partner made enough of a nuisance  of himself to get between the out coming keeper and his centre back, the result was a freak own goal as the ball cannoned of the keeper onto the defender and back toward goal and into the net.

This goal seemed to deflate Caley despite their early pressure, however KSC were pressing further and further in search of another goal, and they didn't have to long to wait. On 25 minutes a corner straight from the training field had Caley in total disarray, the result a bullet header high into the net by Phoenix vice captain Logan Craig leaving Caleys Kyle McLymont with no chance.

Next up was the influential Phoenix number 9 Ryan Strain, again after some neat link up play down the right wing Strain burst into the box however as he jinked his way through the Caley rear guard Dylan Robb would be the culprit as he whipped his legs away before pulling the trigger, no mistake a clear penalty, up stepped Mr Phoenix AKA Jack Ryan to cooly smash the ball in from the wee white spot 3-0 Phoenix!

With only a few minutes elapsed since number three went in KSCs Morgan Loudon wanted in on the act, after out muscling his man on the edge of the area he unleashed a ferocious shot high into the net. This match was turning into a white wash, surely there was no way back for Caley.

Caley would end the half snatching a consolation goal courtesy of the KSC keeper opting to juggle a tame ball into his own net.

Half Time: KSC Phoenix 4-1 Caley Youth

Like the first half Caley youth were to start the second period on the front foot, the result another quick goal consequence of a ball fired low into a crowded box, with everyone caught out the ball flew past the helpless KSC Keeper low into his far right. 4-2 game on, Caley continued to press and around the 65 minute mark they would etch a step closer to their cup rivals, another calamity at the back saw an over crowded box with a ball fired in high past the keeper from Caleys Morgan Bird.

Despite this resurgence from Caley KSC were still pressing at the other end, however after some neat outfield play the final ball was starting to allude them, perhaps weary legs now starting to show after the previous nights excretions or maybe not! at 4-3 the next goal was as crucial as ever, Caley were going for it and Phoenix were likewise. As the match came to a close KSC freshened up the frontline sending on John Jamieson, with the result practically instant as the Phoenix forward met a low cross into the box from Phoenix Captain Jay Anderson stabbing the ball home from 6 yards to finally nail the match.

There was few notes of action in the remaining seconds before the ref blew for full time.

An entertaining match in the David McNaught sponsors cup none the less, in the end KSC were well worthy winners despite allowing the visitors back into the match at 4-0 down. 

Credit to Caley who kept on going to the end despite going 4 down in the first half.

KSC Star Players Jack Ryan and Morgan Loudon both on the score sheet and both dictated play in their own areas of the park.

Caley Youth Star Player no 17 James McIntosh, his pace caused the Phoenix rear guard problems all day, ran himself out in first half and perhaps unlucky not to of had more support in the first period as he looked more of a threat when a second striker was introduced in the second half. 
Full Time: KSC Phoenix 5-3 Caley Youth
Wednesday, 05 March 2014 21:27

Valspar edge Ayr Boswell in nine goal thriller

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Valspar FC
Ayr Boswell
U14's West of Scotland YFL
05 March 2014
KGV playing fields playing fields was the venue for the much anticipated local derby between  Valspar and Ayr Boswell. Boswell are the reigning league champions with Valspar finishing runner  up. Between them the two teams won six trophies in their inaugural 11 a side campaign and have  had 12 players selected for the South West Region development squad.
Boswell are on a high from a recent comfortable win over their local rivals in the cup and after securing a place in the Scottish cup  semi finals. Valspar found themselves in a team rebuilding process having lost players to Kilmarnock and St Mirren. Both teams were hoping to put pressure on league leaders Crosshouse. Boswell lined up with a 442 formation with Valspar employing an attacking 433.
The match kicked off in glorious sunshine with Valspar immediately taking the game to their local  rivals. Before the game settled down Boswell found themselves facing a two goal deficit. On both  occasions it was the diminutive striker Ross Clark who provided the goals. The first came from a  neat one two passing movement between Jack Broun and Jamie Macleod which saw the latter  thread a neat ball through the defensive gap, which Clark latched onto and fired an unstoppable left foot shot past the helpless keeper M taggert.
Not long after Clark found himself with another chance after a mazy run by Lucas Elliot and calmly poked the ball home to put Valspar 2 up.
Boswell are renowned for their never say die attitude and soon got into the game. After pressure  down the right wing from Goudie they forced a corner. The resultant corner was expertly put away from the towering Robbie Meikle.
The game saw Boswell force another corner, which was once again dispatched by Meikle. Boswell were using their height advantage to full effect and Boswell were back on level terms. Game on.
Boswell did not have long to enjoy parirty. A long throw in from Valspar’s Lee Young from deep in  the Boswell half cleared the defence and who else but the livewire Ross Clark was waiting to pounce. One touch to control and one to score and Valspar had restored their lead and given him a hat trick.
Valspar’s Macleod provided some neat footwork and close ball skills 30 yard from goal which  resulted in a lunge from Boswell defender Lee Barrett. The resultant free kick from O’Neil was cleared by Taylor but the rebounding shot was well saved by the keeper. Todd of Boswell had found himself through on goal but his shot was well saved by Caniffe before the referee had adjudged Todd Offside.
The game flowed end to end and the next piece of action saw a free kick awarded to Boswell out  near the corner flag. Once again Boswell showed how clinical they are at set pieces with Jack Taylor popping up to put the ball away past the Valspar keeper from the ensuing scramble.
Once again Valspar hit back quickly. The ever dangerous Clark found space again and his cut back was met at the back post by Cameron Gilmour to restore Valspar’s lead which would see them go into the break 4-3 up.
Half Time: Valspar 4-3 Ayr Boswell
The play resumed as before with no quarter given. A quick breakaway from Robbie Meikle found him taking the ball down the right wing but as he appeared to run out of space he manufactured a cross that found its way over the goalkeeper and into the net completing his hat trick... Boswell were back on level terms again.
Boswell were hampered by an injury to the speedy, dangerous wide player Goudie which saw him being replaced. Hopefully it is not too serious as Boswell will not want to miss his attacking threat for the rest of the season.
The ever dangerous Clark found space again and his cut back was met at the back post by Cameron Gilmour to restore Valspar’s lead. 
Valspar were applying the pressure now. Some neat work from Clark on the right took him to the bye line and from his cutback the oncoming Scott O’Neil was unlucky to place his shot just past the post.
The Valspar defence was posted missing a couple of times as fullback Dempsey pushed up the park and Aaron Sawyer now on the right nearly capitalised. The speedy winger was left unmarked and as a defender came over to cover his progress down the wing he was unlucky just to overrun the ball  out the park.
A free kick to Valspar out wide was taken short, and when the ball came into the box the defenders clearance was blocked by the hard working Gilmour which fortunately for him and not so the defenders found its way into the net. 5-4 Valspar.
Valspar were looking to kill the game off. Fullback Brendan Lynch had found himself getting further and further up the pitch forcing the Boswell rearguard on more than one occasion into committing  fouls. In one instance he skipped past Jordan Bell in midfield and drove into the box. Ryan White made a covering sliding tackle and the ref waved away loud appeals for a penalty. Lynch did not stop though; he quickly got up, dragged the ball onto his right foot and got his shot away which was wellsaved by keeper David Hill.
Boswell were chasing the game and were hitting the ball long to the two tall target men Robbie Meikle and Gavin Todd but to little avail as they were being well marshalled by centre backs Gordon and Young.
Valspar were taking control of the game and were having more possession of the ball. Their three centre midfielder of Broun, Macleod and Elliott were not panicking and were content to pass it about amongst themselves till an opportunity came to find their strikers.
Into the last five minutes and Boswell pushed for an equaliser their closest effort coming from Ryan White who popped up from left back and saw his left foot effort from outside the box flash past the post.
The referee brought the pulsating game to an end. Valspar had held on to a deserved 5-4 victory. They had controlled the middle of the park and with the lethal Clark on fire with the help of Gilmour’s brace they had too much on the day for Boswell.
Boswell was restricted to relying on set pieces and cross balls to provide their chances. Both teams have much to play for and no doubt will continue their healthy rivalry.
Valspar - Caniffe, Lynch, Gordon, Young, Dempsey, Broun, Elliott, Macleod, O’Neil, Gilmour, Clark, Beaucamp, Macphee
Boswell - Mctaggert, Barett,Taylor ,Lamont, Reid, Goudie, Sawyer, Robson, Macnae,Todd, Meikle, Bell, White, Hill
Full Time: Valspar 5-4 Ayr Boswell
Tuesday, 04 March 2014 02:17

Galloway Football Fair open for entries

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The details have been announced for this year's Galloway Football Fair - a festival held in partnership between Galloway Thistle YFC and Newton Stewart FC. 
The event takes place on Saturday 3rd May and Sunday 4th May 2014, hosted at Blairmount Park, Newton Stewart. It caters for teams across a wide range of Fun Fours and Soccer Sevens age groups.
Applications are being invited from teams born 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. 
The 2006 and 2007 age groups participate on the Saturday at Fun Fours, joined by the youngest Soccer Sevens age group - the 2005s. The 2002, 2003 and 2004 age groups take centre stage on the Sunday.
To download an application form click here.
Wednesday, 26 February 2014 02:00

Irvine Thistle in narrow derby win over Girdle Toll

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Irvine Thistle
Girdle Toll YFC
U15's Central Ayrshire YFA
26 February 2014
Due to the weather the game was played on astro turf but this did not deter the quality of football played by the two teams.
Girdle toll started strongly however Irvine thistle withheld the pressure and starting to take control with some quick passing and movement took the lead with a superb lob by Ryan Howat and deservedly scored their second with a flowing move starting with Irvine captain Sam Auld and with the ball finding Liam McKie on the edge of the box he volleyed it into the bottom left corner of the net with the Girdle keeper motionless. 
Half Time: Irvine Thistle 2-0 Girdle Toll YFC
The 2nd half kicked off frantically and Girdle Toll scored a deserved goal, however Irvine thistle pressed once more and straight from a corner Liam McKie scored a superb 3rd goal for Irvine.
Girdle now made changes and this led to a goal. Girdle were enjoying much more of the play now as they pressed for an equaliser. Cameron Easton the Irvine keeper had little saves to make though and Irvine held on to move 10 points in front of their local rivals.
A man of the match performance from captain Sam Auld who was tireless in his work and motivation all game. Praise to both teams who played out the game as a derby should be played in what was difficult conditions. 
Full Time: Irvine Thistle 3-2 Girdle Toll YFC
Tuesday, 25 February 2014 00:23

KSC Phoenix all out of luck in Meadows defeat

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Irvine Meadow
KSC Phoenix
U15's Central Ayrshire YFA
25 February 2014
With the fixture KO put back to 1pm it would ensure the sun was out on this cold but dry Saturday afternoon.

Today's fixture was the first between these two rival ayrshire sides since the leagues show piece cup final last June, Meadow ran out 2-0 winners in that encounter due to a brace from their main striker in the last 5 minutes, however would KSC Phoenix be able to avenge that bitter defeat this afternoon.

As expected the game kicked of at a frantic pace with the visitors showing their hunger for every ball, Irvine Meadow looked slightly shell shocked at the whirlwind start of their opponents, as early as the 4 th minute the ever so influential Phoenix number 11 Josh Lafferty showed once again why he has terrorised defences this season with his direct running at opposition back lines, with some sublime footwork he skipped by three or four Meadow players & somehow fired in a low shot at the keepers near post, Meadows Drew Keifer tipping round the post and out for KSC first of 12 corner kicks.

Irvine Meadow lining up in what looked like a 4-5-1 formation were realy struggling to retain the ball in the opening exchanges, KSC Phoenix opted for the 3-2-4-1 formation mainly looking to snub the threat of Meadows influential striker Daniel Orr. It must be said KSC pulled of a master class in keeping Meadows Orr quiet for the majority of the match.

KSC despite all the early pressure fell behind to a major goalkeeping catastrophe with the Phoenix keeper coming out to take a routine ball, however the ball somehow slipped from his hands and into the path of the incoming Meadow player Ben Cunningham who tapped in from 3 yards.

This goal seemed to ignite the match once again, however not for the home side. The next 3 goal attempts came from the visitors first up was Phoenix number 10 Jamie Lyndsey who was cruely ruled off side despite his cool finish, then up was Lafferty & Strain with pile drivers that flew inches past of either post.

The play in the first 30 minutes was being dictated through the midfield with KSC Phoenix first to every challange, in particular frustration was starting to set in with the hosts and as a result Meadows number 6 Jamie. Lambert was fortunate not to receive a booking for kicking out at his opposite number Connor Black of KSC.

As the first half wore on KSC were pushing further and further upfield, at points  Irvine Meadow became camped in their own 18 yard box, however the result of this progressive pressure failed to materialise in to the much deserved goal to even the scores.

On the rare occasion Meadow threatened in the first half it was result of a high long ball from the back in search of their industrious number 9, on the one occasion where the long ball did reach it's man, Orr coolly tried to round the keeper, however KSC number one Rohan Sohal managed to spread him self well ensuring Orr was forced wide of goal, however the striker managed to turn a shot in on goal only for Phoenix's Jack Ryan to clear the ball off the line and out to safety.

Time was running out for a leveller as the half was drawing to a close for KSC and as a result the half time score ended 1-0 Irvine Meadow.
Half Time: Irvine Meadow 1-0 KSC Phoenix
As the second half started it was clear Meadow had been given a wake up call, this prompted them in to trying to push further forward to support their lonesome striker Orr, who'd had a frustrating afternoon to say the least and one in which he to was fortunate not to of seen red for a blatant kick out at KSCs number 2 Logan Craig.

Meadow had managed to stem the flow of KSCs attacks in the first 20 minutes of the second half, however again it was a result of some more misfortune that saw KSC punished once again, a through ball from Meadows number 8 Cameron Brown fell to the feet of his team mate Cameron Ingils as the Phoenix back line protested for off side they froze allowing the Meadow attack to tap in again from 6 yards out.
Phoenix were furious and as a result ignited their own game plan on again, first up was Phoenix winger number 9 Ryan Strain who would see his shot cannon back out of the post at least that's what it looked like, in actual fact the ball had struck the transportation wheel inside the goal and cannoned out, the rebound again was bulleted toward goal however was straight at the Meadows number 1 Drew Keifer who had still been grounded as a result of the first strike, the keeper however was unable to hold the ball and again the ball was hammered toward goal this time by Phoenix's number 15 John Jameison, again desperate defending with all players in the box a total goal mouth scramble with the end result Meadows rearguard nearly putting the ball in their own net whilst trying to clear.

KSC were again pretty much in control as a result of the corner Jameison cleverly flicked the ball on at the front post only for the ball to be cruely deflected of the post once again by KSCs Lewis Gardiner.

Next up was the influential winger Strain who once again broke into the box only to be scythed down result of what looked like a two footed challange, however the referee missed what looked like a stone wall penalty for the visitors.

It was clear this wasn't going to be KSCs day, as a result of the continuous threat of going forward creating chance after chance they had nothing to show for it, as a result once again Phoenix like before were punished against the run and bulk of play, a long through ball once again from the Meadows back line caught out Phoenix's number 2 who was short with his back pass to the keeper, as a result Meadows number 15 Cameron Ingils cooly curled the ball far into the keepers top left hand corner a stunning strike giving the keeper no chance.

By this point KSC Phoenix couldn't hide their disappointment, they'd put so much into this match and had the league leaders rattled for much of this match. The last 10 minutes saw numerous changes to both sides with very few chances of note, perhaps the last of the afternoon falling to Irvine Meadows Orr who fired one in from around the half way line more out of frustration than anything else.

Full Time: Irvine Meadow 3-0 KSC Phoenix

A great spectacle for the CAYFL with two of the leagues top teams from last year battling it out once again this season, KSC predominantly dominating all aspects of play in the first half, however Meadow responded well in the second taking their few chances well.

Perhaps 3-0 flattered the home side, however they took their chances when they had to, on another day perhaps Lady Luck would of favoured the visitors who played exceptionally well.

KSC star man, there was may contenders, Lafferty, Strain, Lyndsey and Black however it was the influential KSC player Jack Ryan, his touch was class his passing was sublime, not to mention his last ditch defending in the first half to keep the scores at 1-0.

Irvine Meadow star man, goal Keeper Drew Keifer kept his side in it at vital stages of the match with some great blocks.  
Monday, 24 February 2014 05:18

Kilmarnock and Ayr draw in friendly match

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Kilmarnock Academy FC
Ayr United Academy
U17's Friendly
Grange Academy
24 February 2014

Connor McMillianOn Wednesday evening the Academy 17s travelled up the A77 for a ‘friendly’ against Kilmarnock at Grange Academy with a 6.45pm kick off and this was a derby game which was frenetic from the start as both sides battled for local bragging rights at this age group right from the start.

After 15 minutes Killie’s Robbie Hogg tried an overhead effort which Louis Kerr dealt with comfortably. The game then went from end to end and it really was 100 mile an hour stuff with space and time at a premium however as the half wore on Ayr United gained the upper hand. Firstly Ayr were denied a stonewall penalty when Jai Holland turned his marker in the box and was upended. Then Craig McGuffie hit a swerving dipping free kick which Pearce Watt in the Killie nets did well to tip on to the bar and Killie cleared the rebound to safety. The half finished goalless but Ayr had probably just edged it.

Half Time: Kilmarnock 0-0 Ayr United

Two minutes after the restart Killie drove in a cross from the right hand side which caused mayhem inside the Ayr 6 yard box. Louis Kerr and several defenders put their bodies on the line to defend their goal and the ball was eventually cleared to safety after one almighty ‘stramash’.

In the 55th minute Ayr United’s Blair Anderson and Craig Kincaid of Killie epitomised the commitment being shown all over the park as they clashed heads going for a high ball, it looked bad but luckily both boys got up and resumed play.

On the hour mark Killie’s Adam Frizzell hit a 20 yard effort just over. However shortly afterwards Killie opened the scoring with a good goal as Ian Wilson lobbed Louis Kerr from 20 yards out to break the deadlock.

However Ayr United collectively rolled up the sleeves and with David Richardson, Kieran Millar, Craig McGuffie , Blair Anderson and Stuart Faulds winning the 50/50 challenges in the middle of the park they took the game to Killie again and were soon rewarded. With 20 minutes to go Craig McGuffie swung in a ‘Beckham like’ delivery from the right hand side. The swerving delivery evaded all defenders and attackers alike but Pearce Watt in the Killie nets couldn’t deal with the spinning ball and it nestled into the corner of the Killie net for the equaliser.

At this stage Ayr were on top and the Killie back line fouled Jai Holland again in the box and this time the referee had to point to the spot. Jai Holland took responsibility and blasted the ball high into the left hand side of the Killie net with Pearce Watt diving the other way to give Ayr the lead.  

Killie were stung now and the ‘Elite status’ of the Killie youth set up was not being reflected in the balance of play but to be fair they fought back looking for the equaliser. A corner was swung deep to the back post and headed back across goal to the edge of the Ayr box but Robbie Hogg volleyed over.

Ayr were then furious when the referee inexplicably gave Killie a penalty in the 85th minute. A cross was played to the back post, a Killie player headed down and Reece Lapham (who had been superb at the back with his defensive partner Lee Williamson) controlled on his thigh. However the referee pointed to the spot for handball even to the disbelief of the watching Killie parents. Killie striker, Andy Sibbald dually obliged to tie the game up from the spot.

Jai Holland then had one last chance when Kieran Millar played him in, he tried to lob it over the advancing Pearce Watt but the Killie keeper grasped safely and the referee blew a few moments later for full time.

Local Honours even but this game showed that the talent in Ayrshire is equally spread over the County’s two fine old Clubs.  It was also good to see Connor McMillan (pictured) back in an Ayr shirt and although he was he was pitched straight into a derby after recovering from an injury he was solid as a rock at left back all night.

Full Time: Kilmarnock 2-2 Ayr United
Thursday, 20 February 2014 01:37

KSC Phoenix hold on for victory

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KSC Phoenix
Girdle Toll FC
U15's Central Ayrshire YFA
20 February 2014
Today's encounter brings together two teams with great potential of doing exceptionally well in the Central Ayrshire Youth football league this year, with both teams holding one win a piece over one another this season who would take the honours of collecting these valuable three points.

Girdles form has been slightly in different in recent weeks likewise KSC Phoenix, however despite their current league positions both teams turned up with enough fight to prove they'd be in it until the final whistle and more importantly show that they had enough character and guile to steer away from the threat of relegation.

These two teams met earlier in the season, not once but twice. Once on league duty resulting in a 6-4 away win to KSC Phoenix the other only a few days later in the Scottish Cup where Girdle Toll turned in a 1-0 victory.

Today's match would no doubt go a long way for either side in their race for finishing as high up the table as possible, with KSC chasing third spot and Girdle trying to erase the fear of being sucked into the two relegation spots.

KSC Phoenix started the match in fine fashion, their link up play down the right hand side was short sharp and energetic, five minutes in following a quick exchange on the 18 yard line by Phoenix number 11 Josh Lafferty & Phoenix number 9 Ryan Strain the latter with his back toward goal turned & fired his shot just wide of the target, this was to be an early warning!

KSC Phoenix had started strongly opting for the 4-4-2 formation, and it seemed to be paying off, in fact for long spells in the opening exchanges Girdle were struggling to venture out of their own half.
Midway into the first half would see the home side take a much deserved lead, again neat link up play between Phoenix number 3 Craig Maxwell and again the troublesome Lafferty, saw the latter trick his way past two on-coming Girdle players, as the Phoenix forward burst in to the box he dragged the ball with the inside of his right foot sliding the ball past his standing leg the Girdle player was caught in on the act and as a result conceded a penalty as a result of his clumsy challenge.

Up stepped Phoenix vice captain Logan Craig who made no mistake from the spot, with the score at 1-0 it was finely balanced & despite the bulk of possession Phoenix were finding it difficult to add to this fine margin, this was mainly consequence of some tidy defending from Girdles number 8 Gregor McMillan, who was at the heart of every defensive phase of play by his side.

Girdle Tolls lone striker Sean Davis was isolated for long periods of the game & as the half wore on you could read the frustration on the young strikers face, Girdle had opted for a 4-5-1 formation however very rarely would they impose any real threat in going forward.

As the half drew to a close Phoenix would add to their goal tally, after a nice through ball from Phoenix's industrious midfielder Connor Black saw him pick out debutant Jamie Lindsey who coolly slotted the ball low past the descending Girdle Keeper.

The Half would draw to a close with KSC Phoenix captain Jay Anderson withering in agony result of a strong but fair challenge from the Girdles lonesome striker.
Half Time: KSC Phoenix 2-0 Girdle Toll
The second half saw a few enforced changes to the home side, however take nothing away from Girdle they perhaps saw that as their opportunity to claw their way back into the match. Some tactical bravery saw Girdle transform their goal threat opting to go 3-5-2, the fact that they were trying to pay the game further up field was paying off.
Girdles first chance of the half wouldn't  be long in coming after a 5 minute spell of dominance after the restart Girdles number 9 Jack McEwan was put through on goal, his shot was executed superbly low to the keepers right hand side, however the Phoenix number 1 Rohan Sohal had other ideas, somehow magically diving low to his right to tip the ball round the post one handed and out for a corner.

The visitors had a spring in their step and again it was Girdle number 8 Gregor McMillan who was behind all attacking phases, heroic at the rearguard but equally effective going forward. Eventually Girdle did manage a goal back albeit with a helping hand from KSC Phoenix Captain Jay Anderson who cruely turned the ball into his own net, still feeling the effects from his earlier collision the Phoenix captain left the field both physically and mentally sick. Another enforced change! The visitors sensed a comeback, to be fair they had gelled together well after going two goals down, however they were back in the match, they had 20 minutes to go in search for an equalizer.

As the second half drew to a close KSC Phoenix were edging back on top, however credit to Girdle they fought until the end in what was a very good game to watch from a neutrals perspective, possibly the old cliche of a game of two halves, KSC dominant in the first and Girdle slightly better in the second. In the end however KSC Phoenix overall deserved their win, and if it hadn't been for the 5 changes at half time the match may of played out differently.
Full Time: KSC Phoenix 2-1 Girdle Toll
Star player Girdle Toll: Number 8 Gregor McMillian who was at the heart of everything whither in defense or attack, showed great strength in most arial battles despite his height, equally so was a formidable opponent with the ball at his feet.

Star KSC Phoenix Player: Number 11 Josh Lafferty, who was a constant threat all day with his direct runs at the Girdle back line, his trickery with the ball at his feet left most bedazzled & as a result won the penalty which lead to his teams opener.