School Sport: Shenfield High boys lift National Cup
PUBLISHED: 14:30 20 May 2016
Penalty shoot-out delight for under-14s
It was a case of third time lucky as Shenfield High School’s under-14 boys were crowned National Cup winners at Reading’s Madejski Stadium.
Having seen the under-18 boys and under-15 girls lose their finals by the odd goal, they made a bright start against Stretford Grammar School.
Inspired by Ben Purbrick, Shenfield dominated the first 15 minutes and saw Sam Defries and Teddy Cutmore have chances.
Stretford rallied later in the half as it remained scoreless, but captain Purbrick continued to pull the strings for Shenfield after the restart.
Neither side could make the breakthrough, though, and the match went straight to a penalty shoot-out.
Purbrick put away Shenfield’s first, while Kingdom Dawson saved the first Stretford spot-kick.
Cutmore and Sam Blackholly kept their nerve to convert for Shenfield, but Caleb Adeboyega saw his effort saved.
Kieran Huddart showed great composure to find the top corner and Dawson smashed his penalty into the roof of the net, before Stretford missed their final attempt.
Shenfield celebrated wildly, but also acknowledged their opponents, who had prevented leading scorer Deniro Pinto from maintaining his superb record of netting in each tie en route to the final.
Manager Paul Chapman said: “After a lot of hard work and strong performances throughout the year, the relief and joy at the end was clear for all to see.
“It was a great occasion and superb triumph for the boys. There were a lot of travelling supporters who we are very grateful to. Their encouragement helped motivate the players and contributed to the success.
“This is the school’s 12th National sports title and fourth National football title in the last 12 years and with continued hard work and commitment form the players, parents and staff we hope there will be more to come for Shenfield.”