Double delight for East at U14 Inter-Districts

Congratulations to East District on winning the Girls’ and Boys’ U14 Inter-Districts. The East teams finished in the top two places in both competitions on an exciting weekend of youth hockey.

The Inter-Districts brings together the best Under-14 players in the country every year in a hugely popular event. This season’s tournaments at Peffermill on 20th and 21st May were no exception, with 139 goals and superb entertainment.

Girls Tournament

The Girls’ event on Saturday had nine teams split into two groups, with play-offs and finals. East and West both fielded two evenly-matched teams to give more players the opportunity to play.

In Pool A, East Purple won all their matches, scoring 22 goals and conceding none. Ellie O’Connor and Freya Philip scored in a hard-fought 2-0 win against South, before beating Highland 13-0. O’Connor hit five; Philip, Molly Nicolson and Sophie Hogarth all got doubles; and Annabelle van der Merwe and Gracie Mitchinson one each. O’Connor got another two goals in a 6-0 win against South-West before Charlotte Nevard’s winner edged out West Yellow 1-0.

West Yellow were Pool A runners-up, starting with a 1-0 win against South-West thanks to Holly Rowbotham’s goal.  Their 10-0 win over Highland included doubles from Bethan Venables and Rosie Sneddon. And their 5-0 win v South sealed second place with goals from Venables, Rowbotham, Francesca Anderson, Millie Parsons and Chloe Clark.

South-West claimed third with a 6-0 win against Highland, with Daisy Windows and Sofia Schenini both scoring two, and Nuala Quigley and Freya McAleese one each. They also drew 0-0 with South, who finished ahead of Highland with a 5-0 win, with goals from Darcy Liddle (2), Rachel Elliot, Ava Lees and Scarlett Forsyth.

In Pool B, East Sky started strongly with a 3-0 win against West Pink thanks to two well-worked penalty corners from Jessica Forman and a goal from Evie Morris. Forman and Morris both scored hattricks against North in a 6-0 win; and a 3-0 win against Midland saw them top the Pool.

West Pink finished second in Pool B thanks to wins against North (2-1) and Midland (4-0). Autumn Hunter and Brodie McAnkrah scored in both matches. Lexie Lamont’s last-minute goal gave North a 2-1 win v Midland to seal 3rd place, after Juliet Brown (North) and Heidi Mason had scored.


The play-offs produced some cracking matches. Brodie McAnkrah’s goal gave West Pink a 1-0 win against West Yellow to claim 3rd place. North stormed to a 3-0 win against South-West to finish 5th thanks to Elise Morrison (2) and Rose Pinet. And Midland’s 2-1 win v South gave them 7th place; Rose Becattelli gave the Borderers an early lead before India Dow equalised and then Mia Fulton won it with two minutes to go.

In the all-East final, both teams cancelled each other out in an exciting 0-0 draw. Both goalkeepers were unbeatable, with Charlie Rafferty making a stunning triple-save to thwart Sky. That meant the dreaded penalty shoot-out for the large crowd to enjoy!  Purple were faultless as Philip, O’Connor, Mitchinson and Law all scored. Amelia Wilson and Lucy Scott were successful for Sky, but Rafferty produced two superb saves to give Purple a 4-2 victory.

Kelly Fillingham and Janet Jack from Scottish Hockey’s Brave Academy handed over the trophy to Purple’s captain Sophie Hogarth to round off a superb tournament.

East Purple and Sky Squads.
Photo: David McCarthy

Boys Tournament

The Boys’ event the next day produced equally great hockey. The seven teams all played each other in a round-robin tournament, watched by an appreciative crowd and the Brave Academy coaches.

Matches 1-12

At the half-way point in the competition, we had a three-way tie for top spot with East Navy, East Sky and Midland all having won their three matches.  Navy had opened up with a 2-0 win v West Yellow thanks to penalty corners from Kaze Cordero and Harrison Murphy. And Cordero hit two more in a 5-0 win v North. Jack Farmer starred in a 3-1 win v West Cerise, grabbing two goals; Matthew Dodson pulled one back before Murphy sealed the win.

Captain, Angus Fletcher scored twice to give East Sky a 2-1 win v South, with Lucas Martin getting the consolation. Olly Pillinger, Toby Grant and Jonathan Lambert scored in a 3-1 win v West Yellow. And Fletcher and Pillinger were both at the double as Sky beat North 4-1.

Midland’s Angus Tisshaw scored a late winner v North after Eli Clark had cancelled out Henry Steel’s early goal. Another 2-1 followed win against West Cerise, with George Birbeck and Lochlan McDermott on target. And Midland maintained their 100% record as Cameron Allan scored the only goal of the game v West Yellow.

In the other morning matches, West Cerise beat South 1-0 thanks to Logan Macaulay’s early goal; and South got their first points on the board in a 2-0 win v West Yellow. Louis Duncan and Reece Buckley were on target.

Matches 13-21

East Sky then had two vital back-to-back wins against their nearest rivals. Tom Bennet and Jonathan Lambert both scored doubles in a 5-0 win against Midland before Lambert’s excellent strike sealed the points against Navy. In their final match, they sealed the title with 2-1 win against West Cerise thanks to goals from Bennett and Pillinger.

East Navy took the runners-up spot in the last game of the day with an impressive 3-0 win v Midland. Murphy, Jamie Addis and Alexander Tait were on target. And Midland’s 2-0 win against South secured third thanks to goals from Toby Chapman and Lochlan McDermott.

North finished strongly with three wins to finish fourth. Owen Wright’s double beat West Cerise 2-0; Freddie Freeland hit a double in a 4-1 win v West Yellow; and Wright, Freeland and Leo Wishart scored to beat a tiring South 3-0 late in the day. South performed superbly all day to finish 6th, only losing by one goal in three matches and conceding just 10 goals in six matches.

Hunter Borland scored as West Cerise beat their Yellow counterparts 1-0 to finish fifth. Although West Yellow lost their six matches, they were very competitive in all of them and their young squad should be proud of their efforts.

And Finally…

Thank you to all the officials, umpires and other volunteers who contributed to two excellently-run events. Managing 41 matches on two pitches over two days was a big task, and they rose to the challenge in style!  The hard-working District coaches, managers and convenors also deserve a huge ‘shout-out’; and as always, Peffermill were great hosts.

East Sky – U14 Boys Inter-District Winners
Photo: David McCarthy

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