Match Reports by Dwayne Ellis
Crayford Girls Win Under 16 Cup
Crayford Arrow’s girls were celebrating in Sittingbourne as they lifted the Kent Under 16 Girls cup but were pushed all the way by Long Lane in a thrilling encounter. It was a entertaining game from the onset with both teams totally committed to winning but played in great spirits and proved to be a great advert for girls football and the Kent Girls and Ladies League. In a game on a knife edge from start to finish, it was an own goal that eventually separated the sides but the game could of gone either way as Crayford came from behind to take the trophy.
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Long Lane took the lead 8 minutes in, a cross from the left by Lehannah Shogbamimu was spilled by the keeper and Shiannetae Palmer was presented with an open goal 2 yards out to score what would probably be the easiest goal she will ever score in a cup final. Crayford responded in the best possible fashion and equalised 2 minutes later. From a throw in from the left the referee spotted a push in the box and awarded a penalty and the responsibility fell to Captain Megan Sharp who tucked the ball into the corner.
Long Lane nearly took the lead again when Palmer was put through and finished clinically but was denied by the offside flag. Palmer proved to be a threat to the Crayford goal all game, missed the target with a few efforts while a looping effort from Rebecca Dewar was saved as Long Lane finished the half the stronger. The start of the second half was a cagey affair then Long Lane had 3 big opportunities to take the lead but couldn’t take any of them. First an effort from outside the box from Dewar was saved by the keeper, then a great block from Katie Saunders prevented Palmer from getting a clean shot and the biggest chance was when a cross was headed goalwards by Palmer but she glanced it wide.
The third and decisive goal came 13 minutes from time when Katie Bird put in a dangerous low cross from the left and in trying to clear the ball, sliced it into her own net. Long Lane poured forward in search of an equaliser but Crayford held on to win the fourth Kent under 16 girls cup.
Long Lane 1 (Palmer)
Crayford Arrows 2 (Sharp, o.g)
Long Lane: Taylor Stockley, Rose Wood, Sharne Harris, Meg Butler, Jessica Oldfield, Madeleine Bone, Rebecca Dewar (C), Iona Williams, Cydney King, Lehannah Shogbamimu, Shiannetae Palmer.
Subs: Phoebe Asare, Emily Bell, Annie Riley, Laura Burn.
Crayford Arrows: Tina Taylor, Sophie Connell, Fiona Shove, Katie Saunders, Chloe Greef, Megan Sharp (C), Lucy Dean, Kirsty Cameron, Kiera Jenkins, Saliha, Topcu, Katie Bird.
Subs: Megan Smith, Skye Willes-Barrett, Shannon Dring, Daisy Monaghan, Laura Midson
Phoenix Girls Win Under 14 Crown
Phoenix Sports won the under 14 girls cup on a rainy afternoon in Sittingbourne, but had to play at their best to defeat a dogged Kent football United side. Both sides contributed to a exciting game of football played in the greatest of spirits and was a great advert for girls football and the Kent Girls and Ladies League. Phoenix who were the favourites going into the final didn’t have things all their own way but in the end the score line reflected the game as Phoenix were worthy winners.
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The first chance fell to Phoenix as a shot from Maddie Reynolds was saved by KFU keeper Shannon Gold. KFU’s first chance came 20 minutes in from Rosie Jackson-Ward as her shot went just past the post. For the rest of the first half Phoenix started to dominate, with Gold having to make a couple of good saves, Ella Bailey had her shot cleared off the line by the KFU defence efforts from Mika Keen & Ellie Jeffkins were just off target.
Phoenix did take the lead just before half time through a great individual effort from Keen, with a mazy run and fired a low shot into the far corner to give the keeper no chance. After the break Phoenix looked to press home their advantage but they couldn’t add a second goal. First a cheeky flick from Eloise Necker was saved by Gold at the second attempt, then a header from Abigail Williams went just past the far post and after Gold palmed out a corner Necker’s follow up shot went wide.
With 10 minutes to go KFU nearly got an equaliser as a corner was half cleared it fell to Georgia Menditta but her shot went just wide of the left hand post. Phoenix nearly sealed the win with 3 minutes left when Keen went on another run down the right and crossed for Williams but her shot was stopped by Gold. KFU rallied in the last couple of minutes but Phoenix held on and the celebrations started after the final whistle.
Phoenix Sports 1 (Keen)
Kent Football United 0
Phoenix Sports: Shae Ludlow, Eloise Necker, Ella Bailey, Maddie Reynolds, Ellie Jeffkins, Mika Keen, Abigail Williams, Rosie Norman, Seren Bentley.
Subs: Jemma Witchlow, Lauren Feeney, Ciara Tighe, Ellina Driscoll Niles, Leah Saunders.
Kent Football United: Shannon Gold, Yasmin Tomkins, Chloe Francis, Natalie Summers, Lucy Cockeril, Beth Bunker, Leah Goss, Georgia Menditta, Rosie Jackson-Ward.
Subs: Gracie O’Sullivan, Lauren Corbett, Emily Hancock, Emily Kelly, Rosie Howard.