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Penicuik Athletic defeat Giffnock Soccer Centre to clinch SWF U16s Youth Challenge Cup

Penicuik Athletic triumphed 3-1 against Giffnock Soccer Centre in the Scottish Women’s Football Challenge Cup final at Ochilview Park.

Goals from Caitlin Waterston, Emily Brown and Emily Reid sent Penicuik racing into a three-goal lead, whilst Kaitlyn Irvine’s wayward cross pulled a goal back late in the second half.

Photo: Ross Wardrop

The match started, as most cup finals do, even and frantic. Both teams cancelled each other out in the opening exchanges until the 11th minute of the game when Phoebe Stewart in the Giffnock goal was forced into a save. Penicuik’s Reid found space in the box, but her effort from a tight angle was denied by the legs of Stewart.

Giffnock looked for a response two minutes later when Anya Crawford tried her luck from just inside the box after the ball fell to her, but her goal-bound shot was bravely stopped by the Penicuik defence.

Sarah Stewart then had a dig from outside the box which soared just over the bar.

Shortly after, Penicuik defender Brown’s direct free-kick from just outside her own half called Stewart in the opposition goal into action again. The stopper was alert to tip the wicked strike over the bar.

Photo: Ross Wardrop

Brown went for goal again minutes later, however, this time her effort cleared the crossbar.

The deadlock was broken in the 25th minute when Waterston put the girls in blue and white in front after she slotted a one-on-one past Stewart who was unfortunate not to keep it out, getting a touch on the way through.

The second came only 60 seconds later, and it was third time lucky for Brown who saw one of her deep free kicks finally beat the Giffnock keeper. Stewart could not do much to stop the defender’s well-struck effort from 30-yards.

Photo: Ross Wardrop

Penicuik looked to have taken control of the match just after the interval when Reid made it 3-0. She did brilliantly to evade the opposition backline and once again showed great composure to fire past the goalkeeper with a low shot—putting her side in the driving seat.

The rampant Penicuik were then awarded a penalty in the 47th minute for a shoulder barge on Reid. Captain Jenna Clarke stepped up but was denied by the impressive Stewart who went the right way and got down well to clutch the ball, giving her side a glimmer of hope.

And Giffnock did grab a goal back 11 minutes later. A looping cross from Irvine on the right went all the way into the top left corner, the flight of the ball deceiving Ella Marr between the sticks. This gave the side hope going into the last 20 minutes.

Photo: Ross Wardrop

Katherine Sharp would have pulled a second back if it wasn’t for a stunning stop from Marr. The shot from Irvine’s cutback looked destined for the net but the heroics of the Penicuik goalkeeper preserved the two-goal lead.

The last chance of the match came in added time when Sharp’s cross found Holly Black at the back post. Her strike was fired just over the bar.

Scenes of jubilation ensued at the final whistle as the Penicuik bench were joined by their young supporters in celebrating with their victorious team on the pitch.

The cup win marks a double for the side, who also clinched their domestic league title unbeaten.

Photo: Ross Wardrop

Giffnock Soccer Centre Player of the Match: Phoebe Stewart

The goalkeeper kept her side in the match throughout. Unlucky with the free kick from Brown, she still made several good saves and dealt with several high balls into the box well.

Penicuik Athletic Player of the Match: Emily Brown

Brown marshalled her defence throughout and capped off her performance with a fine free-kick from distance. An astute performance.

Magic Moment Giffnock Soccer Centre: Stewart’s penalty heroics

The Giffnock stopper gave her side a chance by saving a penalty at 3-0 down. This inspired a late fightback from her team.

Magic Moment Penicuik Athletic: Brown’s thunderous free kick

The defender stunned the ground with her 30-yard strike from the set piece. A goal fit for a cup final.

Giffnock Soccer Centre U16s

42. Phoebe Stewart

63. Faith Wilson

67. Cerys Ramsay

65. Anna Crawford

49. Katherine Sharp (C)

50. Sarah Stewart

66. Anna Steele

45. Niamh Bourke

44. Holly Black

53. Anya Crawford

73. Kaitlyn Irvine


62. Grace

52. Maisie Hunter

68. Ava Boyd

71. Kirsty Latta

68. Ava Boyd

70. Callia Clifford Demetriou

46. Lucia Walls

Penicuik Athletic U16s

1. Ella Marr

3. Emily Brown

5. Kerry Farmer

8. Isla Kay

9. Isabella Hall

10. Emily Reid

11. Jenna Clarke  (C)

13. Laura Blackie

14. Millie Higgins

17. Gemma Burns

19. Caitlin Waterston


2. Amy Somervile

4. Lucy Hamilton

6. Daisy Mabon

12. Ella Wood

15. Alisa Jarvis

18. Kerry Brown



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