Girls suffer cup final shoot-out heartache

HEARTBREAK: Aimee Heath fires home the second penalty of the shoot-out but it was not enough to claim the West Wales Women and Girls League U14 Cup as Ammanford went down 3-2 on penalties.

HEARTBREAK: Aimee Heath fires home the second penalty of the shoot-out but it was not enough to claim the West Wales Women and Girls League U14 Cup as Ammanford went down 3-2 on penalties.

First published in Sport
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West Wales Women and Girls League U14 Cup Final

Ammanford 4 Llangyfelach 4 (aet)

Llangyfelach won 3-2 on penalties

Ammanford suffered the heartbreak of a penalty shootout defeat in the final of the West Wales Women and Girls League U14 Cup, going down 3-2 after a sizzling 4-4 draw with Llangyfelach after 120 minutes of action.

Both sides looked to play attacking football from the off as the game swung from end to end.

Ammanford defenders Ffion Morgan, Celyn Lazenby and Ebony Danter were on fantastic form, but Llangyfelach opened the scoring 15 minutes with a sweet 25-yard freekick which dipped under Lowri Williams’ bar to earn Llan the lead.

Ammanford went in search of a response but failed to find the killer pass until late on in the half when Nia Rees skilfully turned her marker in the centre of park and released Aimee Heath on the left flank. Heath whipped a smart cross into the box where the unmarked Louise Palmer calmly side-footed home to take the sides into the interval on level terms.

The second half continued at the same unrelenting pace and Llangyfelach went ahead after a defence-splitting pass saw their striker fire past the stranded Williams.

Ammanford were soon two behind when the impressive Llan striker curled a sublime finish into the top corner almost from the goal-line.

Ammanford were forced to dig deep with Ela Roberts fantastic from box to box while Melissa Mann aimed the cause with a series of solid tackles.

Ammanford got back into the game when striker Chantel Mann fired home after a great ball from Heath.

With their tails up, Ammanford ploughed forward and drew level after a period of sustained pressure when the unfortunate defender sliced a clearance into her own net.

With little time left, Ammanford continued on the front foot and almost find a last-gasp winner when Mann’s edge of box strike beat the keeper only to graze the outside of the post.

Extra time proved a nervous affair with Ammanford full backs Alisha Jones and Megz Morris and Emma Landek in excellent form.

The first half of extra-time remained goalless as both strides struggled to make the breakthrough and the second began in the same vein.

Ammanford thought they had their hands on the cup late on when a misplaced clearance from the Llan keeper feel to Palmer.

She showed great technique to control the bouncing ball and, spotting the keeper off her line, struck a smart 35-yard effort into the net - to shrieks of delight from her team mates.

But Llan had other ideas and with just minutes left were awarded a penalty, which was dispatched with ease.

The final whistle brought the usual nail-biting of a shootout and Ammanford kept their nerve to go 2-1 up.

But the next was saved and Llan drew level. Both sides missed their fourth spot-kicks and Ammanford missed their fifth, leaving Llan’s hat-trick striker to step up and fire home the winner.

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