Wednesday, March 4 saw the 2nd team fighting for a win in the Conference Cup semi-final against Strathclyde 1sts.
The match started with some excellent football from EUWAFC but it remained goalless at half time. Both teams maintained equal pressure; neither side were prepared to lose, and so their rugged determination led to a 0-0 scoreline at the end of the second half. Extra time saw a tough battle from all the players but neither team could find the back of the net. Unfortunately for Edinburgh their Captain, Rebecca Haig, was forced off the field with what’s turned out to be a broken leg. Edinburgh thus faced a penalty shootout with only ten players.
Everyone was silent as Kirsty Maden stepped up for the first attempt. She expertly sent the ball into the upper left corner as the goalkeeper dived right, scoring the first goal of the shootout to cheers from her teammates. Strathclyde responded in kind with a successful kick of their own – although EUWAFC goalkeeper Charlotte Parker-Smith got a hand on the ball, but it hit the back of the net.
The next five penalties saw two more goals for Edinburgh by Carolina Sousa and Amanda Sutherland and two more for Strathclyde as well, with Parker-Smith getting a hand on nearly all the shots and saving three with amazing acrobatic saves. The match moved on to sudden death and both sides were tense as Lily Chubb stepped up to the penalty spot.
She tucked the ball into the back of the net, and straight afterwards Parker-Smith made an incredible save from Strathclyde’s shot, leading EUWAFC to victory and a place in the Conference Cup final, which will be played on the 25th March in Dundee.
This season has been fantastic for the EUWAFC 2nd team. The side responded well to finishing as runners-up in last year’s league, winning the 3A League as well as reaching a cup final.
Captain Rebecca Haig spoke of her jubilation after the match, saying: “I’m so proud! The team, having narrowly missed the title last season, was determined from the outset to be crowned champions at the end.
“With this determination and addition of new, skilled players of all positions, the team demonstrated it had the ability to achieve the goals we’d set from the start. Being able to lead such a strong determined team has been a pleasure.
“Reaching the final in sudden-death penalties was a nerve-wracking experience. Credit has to go to our keeper Charlotte Parker-Smith who saved a phenomenal four of seven. The team is excited for the final, a chance to play a team who we will be facing next year in the league.”