Hutchie under-13s lift Scottish Cup again as Tynecastle suffer nerves
HUTCHISON VALE under-13s beat close rivals Tynecastle FC 2-0 on their way to winning the Scottish Cup final at Almondvale in Livingston.
Vale will now represent Scotland for the second year running in the British finals of the Tesco Cup in the City of Manchester Stadium on Sunday, May 20.
Last season's Hutchison Vale team in this age group beat Percival (London) 2-1 to claim the title of "best in Britain" and the current squad will be bidding to make it two in a row at the end of the month.
Vale's win at Almondvale was the first of two finals to take place at Livingston FC's stadium and a crowd of 1500 turned up to support the kids.
The first half of the 13s final was a real end-to-end contest with both sides affected by nerves on this big occasion for all the young players - and their parents watching from the stands, too!
Former Hearts star Gary Mackay is the coach of the Tynecastle squad and he sportingly paid tribute to the winners, saying: "No argument, the better side on the day won and I congratulate them. They were deserved winners."
Team secretary, Susan Rodgers, added: "Our players were so nervous in the first half and it affected them badly. But we are all proud of them, they put up a great show."
Tynecastle took the game to Vale in the opening spell and won two corners early on, with Callum Paterson forcing Vale keeper, Jamie Cleland, into action.
In another raid on the Vale goal Taylor Aitchison fired a shot wide of the target. When Vale got going, they were denied an opening goal by a good save from opposing keeper Michael Ross.
Jamie Forsyth had a half-chance to open the scoring for Tynecastle but his finishing shot failed to trouble Cleland.
With defences on top the score was still 0-0 at the break.
On the restart, Vale pressed forward and a superbly-hit low effort from Euan Smith beat Ross in the Tynecastle goal but the ball rebounded back into play off the keeper's right-hand post. That was followed by an anxious moment for Vale, with a tremendous 30-yard free-kick from Darryl McLaren just clearing the top of the Vale crossbar.
The best chance so far then fell to Smith when the Vale No.8 ran on to a short pass back and beat the keeper, only for his shot at the empty goal to go wide of the target.
In a period of pressure on the Tynecastle goal, Smith again fired a shot off the post and Sean Higgins smashed the rebound past Ross to make it 1-0 for Vale.
Once again, Tynecastle raised their game and they went close to getting the equaliser with a good strike from McLaren going wide of the Vale goal. Play went back to the other end, and a half-volley from Higgins skimmed over the top of the Tynecastle goal.
Vale looked in command of the game in the closing stages with the Tynecastle defence under a lot of pressure and Vale went on to score the goal that clinched the Scottish Cup from a penalty, after Smith was brought down in the box.
Dean Crane took the spot-kick and the Vale No.10 scored with a great shot into the corner of the net to make the final scoreline 2-0.
Niall Doherty, pictured left, won the man-of-the-match award to make it a clean sweep for Hutchison Vale.
Alex Houston, a spokesman for the winning side, said: "Both teams looked very nervous in the first half, but we were the better side in the second period and I thought we were deserved winners," he said.
"We can now look forward to our trip to Manchester to represent Scotland in the British Finals of the Tesco Cup.
"It would be a real feat for Hutchison Vale to win it for the second time in succession."
Hutchison Vale: Jamie Cleland, Michael Langdale, Connor Pont, Mark Horseborough, Jack Hood, Gareth Rogers, Bradley Crane, Euan Smith, Sean Higgins, Dean Crane, Neale Bentley, Ross Brady, Niall Doherty, Sam Stanton, Craig McBride, Scott Gray, Ryan Crawford.
Tynecastle FC: Michael Ross, Taylor Aitchison, Lewis Crosbie, Jamie Forsyth, Neil Gibson, Joe Greig, Thomas Kidd, Fergus Lochhart, Mark McConnell, Darryl McLaren, Ross MacNaughton, Callum Paterson, Euan Rodgers, Grant Stuart, Craig Sutherland, Jamie Todd.
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Sunday 19 May 2013
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