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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

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Holker triumph over Hawcoat after penalty shootout drama

HOLKER Old Boys claimed the narrowest of victories over Hawcoat Park as they triumphed in a penalty shootout to avenge their FA Youth Cup final defeat.

The lads in green twice went ahead, only for Hawcoat to peg them back and take the match to extra-time and spot kicks.

Hawcoat were looking to add a third trophy to their league and Youth Cup final wins, but found the Old Boys defence of Matthew Boyd, Jack Elliott, Macauley Barclay and Jordan Patterson cancelled out their normally dominant attacking line.

The midfield tussle was keenly fought, with the impressive Christian Squire working tirelessly for Hawcoat with the skilful support of Sam Hayes, the lightening quick Nathan Shaw, and Ben Watson, who was replaced by brother Ethan.

Attacking the Holker Street End, Old Boys continued to press and their efforts were rewarded when Shaw slipped an exquisite pass into the path of Lee Irving, who finished sublimely into the left corner of the net past Charlie Foster.

Sam Johnson pulled Hawcoat back into the match to make it 1-1 as it approached its conclusion. The match could have been settled in normal time, but for some courageous defending by both sides – Sam Whittaker denying Tom Jackson, of Holker, and Macauley Barclay thwarting Hawcoat’s Luke Mitchell.

The first half of extra time saw Holker driving forward again to the Holker Street End and Shaw scored the goal of the game when he controlled a clearance from the Hawcoat Park defence, took one touch and drove a fierce looping left-footed shot over diving keeper Charlie Foster.

The lead was short-lived, however, as Callum Caldwell scored from a 20-yard free-kick to pull Hawcoat level for a second time and take the game to penalties.

Hawcoat Park’s first effort was just wide of the right-hand post, Christian Squire then finished with aplomb for Holker to put them 1-0 up.

The next Hawcoat Park effort struck the post and Lee Irving drove his penalty past Hawcoat goalkeeper Charlie Foster for 2-0.

Hawcoat Park’s third attempt hit the bar, but Jack Elliott was unable to score with the next Old Boys penalty, meaning Hawcoat had to score with their next effort.

Holker keeper Barclay had other ideas though as he pulled off a fine save, his team-mates swarming forward and enveloping him in celebration of their victory.

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