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Wilson the hero as Vanbrugh win in shootout drama

Vanbrugh captain James Wilson saved three and scored one, as Vanbrugh prevailed over Derwent in a dramatic penalty shootout to book their place in the College Cup Final

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Cup Semi Final

Images: Agatha Torrance and Philippa Grafton

Vanbrugh captain James Wilson saved three and scored one, as Vanbrugh prevailed over Derwent in a dramatic penalty shootout to book their place in the College Cup Final.

Derwent looked set to progress after Dan Atherton scored late on, but Phil Taylor equalised in the dying seconds of the game to send it to penalties, with Vanbrugh keeping their cool to win 3-1.

The absence of Tom Brandreth due to illness was a blow to Derwent before kickoff, but their defence remained solid in a first half that yielded few clear chances.

Both sides seemed to cancel each other out, the best opportunity falling to Elliot Rous-Ross, who slid a shot at Seb Treasure after being played in by Taylor.

Both teams were forced to try their luck from range, but to little effect, other than a delightful Ollie Harrison free kick that almost caught Wilson out.

Jon Gill nearly gave Vanbrugh the lead before the break, his long range free kick deflected off of Mike Whittall and Treasure was forced to scramble across his goal to keep it out, before Vanbrugh shouted for a penalty that wasn't given.

The second half began in the same fashion, with neither side able to create too much, until play was interrupted due to a pitch invasion from a streaker wearing nothing but the head of the Derwent Duck.

Shortly after, Derwent had a goal controversially disallowed. Harrison headed in unmarked at the back post, but referee Dan Horsfall blew for a free kick to Vanbrugh for a push.

This gave Derwent the momentum, though, and they tested Wilson moments later, Atherton striking a crisp effort from distance that looked destined for the top corner.

Alex d'Albertanson and David Kirk both went close as Derwent piled on the pressure, but the game looked certain to end goalless.

That was until Sam Earle picked up the ball in midfield and drove at the Vanbrugh defence, sliding in Atherton to calmly place a shot beyond Wilson and into the bottom corner. With just five minutes left on the clock, the Derwent fans were in celebratory mood.

Vanbrugh had struggled to get out of their own half with much purpose for the majority of the second period, and an equaliser seemed an unlikely prospect.

But with the final whistle approaching, Phil Taylor notched his eighth of the tournament to level the scores. Gill played a ball over the top of the Derwent defence and Taylor ran on, just beating Treasure to the ball before watching his header bounce over the line, sparking jubilant scenes on the touchline.

That sent the match to penalties, with both sides lining up on the halfway line and the crowds gathered around in anticipation.

Vanbrugh made the perfect start, Gill scoring, before Wilson saved from Atherton. Wilson stepped up to take the next one himself and sent Treasure the wrong way, before making another save, this time from d'Albertanson.

Treasure denied Taylor with an outstretched leg, and Harrison produced the best penalty of the lot to give Derwent hope, striking confidently into the top corner.

John Sanderson scored, which left Kirk with the unenviable task of keeping his side's chances alive. In the battle of the two captains, Wilson prevailed once more as Kirk hit his shot low and down the middle, allowing the keeper to save with his legs.

That made it 3-1 on spot kicks, and sent Vanbrugh through to the final, where they will face either James or Halifax.

The emotions of the two captains could hardly have been more contrasting at full time. An ecstatic Wilson told Nouse, "Well played Derwent, it was a really tight game and when it goes to penalties anyone can win but I'm glad we did this time."

Kirk, by contrast, was dejected, commenting, "I think we played well, and losing Brandreth before the game meant we had to be resolute. We thought we were in the final at the end, but it's such a shame to lose on penalties."

Derwent: Treasure, Boughtflower, Harrison, Jeffreys, Tapper, Farrell, Atherton, Earle, Whittall, d'Albertanson, Kirk

Man of the match: Ollie Harrison

Vanbrugh: Wilson, Wignall, Heath (Parish), Graham, Brewer, Grout (Shepherd), Taylor, O'Dwyer (Sanderson), Gill, Sharkey, Rous-Ross

Man of the match: James Wilson

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1 Comment

Tonka Posted on Wednesday 24 Apr 2019

Proper ballsy win! gan absolutli crakaz wen tailor baggd like


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