Last gasp penalty sees U15s top section

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Oban Saints U15s travelled to Carluke last Sunday to play Milton Rovers in a top of the table clash in Group B of the Glasgow & District Youth Football League Divisional Cup.

Having beaten Milton 5-2 in Oban in early May, the young Saints needed only a point to top the group.

The home side started strongly and the Saints struggled to get into the game in the early stages.

Milton took the lead on 20 minutes, with the first real effort on target, a good turn and shot from outside the box taking a slight deflection and leaving Saints’ goalkeeper Josh Lane with no chance.

Milton dominated in the next ten minutes and came close to doubling their advantage twice, first with a shot just wide of the target from inside the box then hitting the post with a low free kick.

Saints finished the half strongly though. The best move of the half saw Zander Craik cut the ball back for the onrushing Preston MacIntyre, with the Saints captain’s goal-bound effort blocked by the defender for a corner. Just before half time, Aidan MacDonald had a shot from distance which the Milton goalkeeper saved comfortably, then minutes later the Saints midfielder’s low free kick led to a scramble in the six yard box which Milton managed to clear.

Into the second half and although Saints were now in the ascendency it was Milton who had the first chance with a free header in the box. But it went straight into the gloves of Josh Lane.

Saints were inches away from an equaliser on 48 minutes after good play from Zander Craik ended with a low driven cross which evaded a touch from a number of players in the six yard box that would surely have resulted in a goal. Zander had a glorious chance of his own on 52  minutes, running on to a defence splitting pass from Preston MacIntyre and rounding the onrushing goalkeeper but with the angle against a first time finish the striker curled his effort just past the post.

Saints captain Preston MacIntyre then hit the bar twice, both with shots from the edge of the box, with Zander Craik also bringing out a great save from the Milton goalkeeper in between those efforts.

It was beginning to look like it was one of those days for the Saints’ boys but with only three minutes left on the clock the referee awarded Saints a penalty after Zander Craik was fouled in the box. Up stepped Craik to send the goalkeeper the wrong way and equalise with a well taken penalty kick.

The U15s now have a semi final to look forward to, with their opponents and date still to be confirmed, but they know they will have to play better to be in with a chance of reaching their first cup final.