The Wallace High School girls’ 1st X1 reached the quarter finals of the Schools Cup on Saturday after defeating Dalriada 3 – 1 after extra time. It was a closely fought encounter which Dalriada started well by dominating the opening eight minutes particularly by attacking down the right hand side.
The Wallace midfield then started to gain some control and centre midfielder Sophie McClean opened the scoring with a fiercely struck reverse stick shot into the roof of the net. This goal seemed to have a settling effect on the Lisburn girls who began to play to their potential with Jo Leathem and Tessa Stewart particularly prominent.
Wallace were still leading well into the second half before their opponents equalised with a high ball into the circle which proved too difficult for the defence to handle. The final ten minutes saw the Lisburn girls create plenty of chances which they just could not put the finishing touches to.
Captain Lauren Wilson in particular beat two defenders and rounded the keeper only to hit the post, whilst the outstanding McClean and Lisa MacDonnell both went close.
Twenty minutes of extra time had to be played. At this stage Wallace appeared to be the fitter team and when centre forward Sarah Montgomery scored from close range in the first period of extra time they took the lead. The same player then scored another in the second period to seal victory to put the 1st X1 into the quarter finals for the first time in many years.
Overall this was an excellent team performance and one which the coaching staff were very pleased with. Goal keeper Anna Jones produced two outstanding saves at key moments and kept her side in the game.
The team is a good mixture of experience and youth and the four upper sixth pupils, captain Lauren Wilson, Sophie McClean, Sarah Montgomery and Tanya Surgeon all produced excellent displays.
Rachel Morrow, who has just joined this year from Dromore High School is very creative up front, whilst Jade Neely and Ellen Hood provide versatility in midfield and defence. The two youngest players, Year 11 pupils Steffi Baron and Lisa MacDonnell are gaining in confidence with each game and are getting used to playing in big, pressure cup matches.
The 1st X1 were not the only team to enjoy cup success last week. The 2nd X1 defeated Cookstown High 3 – 0 to progress to the third round of the McDowell Cup, Laura Howard and Emily Burden the goal scorers.
The under 14X1 defeated Coleraine High after extra time to progress to the third round in the Junior Cup, Keziah Hood scoring the only goal. All teams will now go into the new year with important cup games to look forward to, especially the 1st X1 who await with interest their opponents in the quarter finals.
Last modified: December 8, 2009