Cooper shines between the sticks as AFC Henley Hurricanes secure shield win
AFC HENLEY HURRICANES beat Berks County Eagles in a penalty shoot-out to win the East Berks
AFC HENLEY HURRICANES beat Berks County Eagles in a penalty shoot-out to win the East Berks U9 Shield at Ascot United on Saturday.
In the first two quarters it was the opposition who created the best chances and good saves from Joe Cooper and Sam Cooper kept the scores at 0-0 at half-time.
Henley had the balance of possession throughout the game but in the second half the best chances fell to Berks County Eagles with a finger-tip save from Callum Monks and a low diving save from Juan van’t Hoff Bernal.
Charlie Rolstone created havoc on the right wing and remained a danger throughout the game. Despite numerous crosses into the area, Henley were unable to capitalise. Kallum McWilliams shot wide of the post and van’t Hoff Bernal found himself in front of goal with the keeper to beat only to nudge the ball wide of the post.
Joe Cooper and Alex Miles Kingston both played with assured confidence in defence, reading the game brilliantly and barely missing a tackle all game.
With the scores at 0-0 going into extra-time Henley’s best chance again came from a Rolstone cross that flew across the area. Monks met it on the half-volley only to see it go over the bar. A Miles-Kingston slide tackle in the dying minutes averted a potential Eagles shot on goal and saw the game move to penalties.
Sam Cooper saved the first of the penalties with a diving save to his right. Kallum McWilliams and Joe Cooper put Henley in the lead as Berks County Eagles saw their second penalty go wide.
Cooper saved their fourth penalty leaving it to Monks to score and give Henley a 3-1 win. Cooper took the player of the day award both for his overall performance and for his penalty saving efforts in the shoot-out.
AFC Henley Hurricanes U9s: Ted Carter, Joe Cooper, Sam Cooper, Harvey Doyle, Jack Kernick, Kallum McWilliams, Alex Miles-Kingston, Callum Monks, Jack Rees, Charlie Rolstone, Juan van’t Hoff Bernal.