Banchory Academy senior girls wrote their own piece of football history on May 11. Exactly 30 years after Aberdeen won the European Cup Winners Cup in Gothenburg, the humbler surroundings of Bellsea Park, Fraserburgh, provided the backdrop to another groundbreaking victory.
The Senior Girls Aberdeenshire Cup had only ever been won by one school, Mintlaw Academy. To break the mould of girls football Banchory had to take on the cup holders in their own backyard.
Captain Cath Thomson won the toss and chose to play into the strong wind in the first half.
Banchory immediately took the game to Mintlaw and within two minutes a surging run from Thomson left the Mintlaw defence trailing and THOMSON’s left foot drive crashed past the helpless keeper onto the underside of the bar and into the net.
Mintlaw were rocked and were struggling to respond. Banchory’s width with Thomson on the left and Kirsty Dickson breaking from midfield on the right, was causing all kinds of problems, whilst in defence Beth Robertson calmly marshalled the back four, leaving Scotland Under 15 goalkeeper Becky Flaherty a mere spectator.
A second goal came from a superb move involving the front pairing of Sam Cunningham and Kay Beaton which created space for THOMSON to finish at the back post for 2-0.
A clever corner caught the Mintlaw defence flat footed and Aysha Hutcheon’s header was cleared off the line as Thomson moved in, and denied her a first half hat trick.
At half time Cunningham came off to be replaced by Georgia Wisely, and Hutcheon made way for Rachel Siswick.
Mintlaw started the second half well taking the game to Banchory without creating any openings in the resolute Banchory defence.
Banchory went further ahead in their first meaningful attack of the half. Rachel Henderson was now finding space in midfield played Beaton into a shooting position that was cleared only as far as Beth ROBERTSON who took a first time shot and drilled it low into the Mintlaw net for Banchory’s third goal of the night.
Mintlaw needed a goal to get back into the final and created their best chance of the game to be thwarted by Flaherty with a brave save at the feet of the on rushing forward.
Cath THOMSON soon claimed her hat trick with a shot to the front post that deceived the goalkeeper and ended in the net.
Mintlaw were looking dejected and within minutes Thomson scored again, an expansive move from the back on the right created space for Wisely to cross, with the clever running of Beaton providing space for THOMSON at the back post to slam the ball high into the net for 5-0.
The game was played out in a very sporting manner with Mintlaw trying to at least to claim a consolation goal, but Banchory held firm and took the cup away from Mintlaw for the first time. Cath Thomson picked up the trophy on behalf of the team to applause from the crowd.
Banchory: Flaherty, Christophersen, Morrison, Sadler, Robertson, Dickson, Hutcheon, Henderson,Thomson, Cunningham, Beaton. Subs: Wisely, Siswick.