View Photo Gallery (Courtesy of Kevin Thorne)
Discuss the Match | Buy Photos and Souvenirs
After a long, hard season for both of these sides a tie at Kilmarnock’s Rugby Park was on the table to decide who was the best Under 13s school side in Scotland. Edinburgh’s Broughton High School made the journey to the South-West to face Kilmarnock’s own Grange Academy. Judging by either side’s road to the final we were expecting goals in the final however, the two were involved in a tighter match with a late double from Ciaran Brian sealing the win for Broughton.
Broughton settled into the game early on and used the large pitch to their advantage as they passed the ball around with ease. They had a lot of possession, however, it was in the middle of the park and they could not trouble their opponents or create any chances in the opening exchanges.
It was Grange who had the first opportunity as Michael Hewitt threatened. A ball was crossed into the box from the left hand side, Hewitt found himself on the end of the ball twelve yards out. Hs initial header was blocked by a defender before it could reach the goalkeeper with a few players claiming for handball. Hewitt played on, getting onto the rebound where he smashed his shot at goal forcing a fantastic save from Ross Coats at close range as he pushed the shot onto the post.
Coats was forced into action moments later as Hewitt went close again. Ewan Farrell played a defence-splitting ball to Hewitt who got inside the penalty area on the right hand side. He took a shot across the keeper which meant Coats had to produce another good save to keep the scores even.
Grange continued to create chances at will and they nearly scored from a lightning counter attack. Jack Paterson picked the ball up mid-way inside his own half and drove towards the Broughton box. He got inside the area with no challenges in sight. Paterson moved the ball onto his right foot and tried to place his effort inside the far post but the shot was easily saved.
Despite their early possession Broughton were unable to create any clear-cut chances until mid-way through the first half. Daniel Nichol played a cross into the penalty from deep on the right hand side. One of Grange’s defenders tried to usher the ball back to his goalkeeper. Ciaran Brian, though, pounced on the loose ball ahead of the keeper and tried to lob the keeper who was off his line. Brian’s shot, though, was not good enough to beat Lewis Campbell who caught the ball with ease.
The Kilmarnock side went looking for the opening goal again as the first half came to a close. A free kick was played into the area from deep on the right wing. The cross found its way to the backpost where Craig Phillips was waiting. The defender controlled the ball well and got a shot away on the half volley but another good save denied Grange the opening goal of the match.
With the final attack of the half, Grange were finally able to take the lead that they deserved based on the number of chances they had created. Michael Hewitt picked the ball up on the right hand side and drove to the by-line. He cut the ball back to Chrissy Law who took a touch, twelve yards out, and got a shot away. The effort was deflected, catching the keeper out and ending up in the back of the net.
At half time Grange led 1 – 0. They deserved their lead as they created numerous chances throughout the half and probably should have scored more.
Half Time: Broughton High School 0 – 1 Grange Academy
Broughton started the second half with the half time team talk still ringing in their ears. They immediately got on the front foot and looked to get an equaliser. A free kick on the left hand side was crossed in by Reece Rintoul. His cross was headed to the backpost and looked to be heading in but Lewis Campbell made a great save to keep his side’s lead intact.
As Broughton pushed forward they left space at the back which Grange exploited with the next chance of the game. Michael Hewitt picked the ball up and drove at the Broughton defence. His floated cross picked out Robbie Handling who had a free header. The attacker jumped too early and put his headed effort over the bar from six yards out.
The next incident of the match was a penalty decision which went the way of Broughton. Bradley Whyte was fouled as he got to a ball ahead of the defender and the referee pointed to the spot straight away. Ciaran Brian stepped up and was calm enough to slot the ball into the bottom left corner, leaving the keeper with no chance.
The score was now 1 – 1 with ten minutes to play. Moments after the goal Brian was able to get his second of the match. A long ball was played into the Grange area. Brian chased down the ball, getting there ahead of the onrushing Lewis Campbell. Brian saw the keeper off his line and lobbed him with his first touch and watched as his shot rolled over the line to give his side the lead in the match.
Broughton were able to see out the final few minutes of the match without any problems as they clinched the Under 13s Scottish Shield with a strong performance which saw they under alot of pressure in the first half but turn around their level of performance in the second to make a memorable comeback.
Full Time: Broughton High School 2 – 1 Grange Academy