Gallery & Slideshow: Owen's beaten in national semis

PUBLISHED: 18:41 29 April 2008 | UPDATED: 22:17 26 October 2009

Paco Craig clears the ball

Paco Craig clears the ball

DAME Alice Owen s School s Year 10 football team lost 2-1 to the Harefield Academy in the semi-finals of the National U15 Schools Cup. With a crowd of 400 people in attendance at Potters Bar Town FC s Parkfield ground, the Dugdale Hill Lane school s talen

DAME Alice Owen's School's Year 10 football team lost 2-1 to the Harefield Academy in the semi-finals of the National U15 Schools Cup.

With a crowd of 400 people in attendance at Potters Bar Town FC's Parkfield ground, the Dugdale Hill Lane school's talented Year 10 side were just unable to make the national final.

It was always going to be a tall order with Harefield having a number of Watford Academy youngsters playing in their side, but the Potters Bar pupils gave it their all and were far from disgraced.

The teenagers were cheered on by their classmates from their schools as hundreds stood on the sidelines and watched the match.

Adam Cotton, head of boys' PE at Dame Alice Owen's School, said: "They (Harefield) were organised and technically excellent.

"I would say they are probably the best school side I have seen for a long time."

Owen's started well and felt they should have had a penalty early in the first half.

While on the attack, Josh Thompson appeared to be bundled down by the Harefield goalkeeper.

The referee ignored the protests, and with the score at 0-0 it was a defining moment in the game.

Harefield took the lead after 15 minutes when a good passing movement saw the ball land at the feet of their centre forward and he drilled past keeper Andrew Ward.

Yet Owen's continued to play with their "never-say-die" attitude and equalised just on half-time.

Darragh Viera poked home a cross from the right to level the scores.

However, Harefield's skill and experience began to show in the second half.

Owen's had keeper Ward to thank for keeping them in the game with a number of impressive saves.

But the second goal soon came to Harefield, albeit in bizarre fashion.

A cross into the box deceived Ward in goal and found its way into the net.

Although it was somewhat fortuitous, the goal was no more than the Academy side deserved, having played some excellent football.

After the game, Cotton conceded his side had come up against stronger opposition.

He said: "We are pleased at how far we have got in the competition.

"We knew it was always going to be very difficult against Harefield.

"But we have got to the last four out of 1,000 school teams in the competition, and for that I am delighted with all the boys' efforts."

Harefield are due to face Cardinal Heenan Sports College, Liverpool in the final.


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