Liam smith notched at either end of the second half as Leith Athletic 21s defeated Tynecastle 21s 2-0 to be crowned South-East Region Cup winners on Saturday.
The tea-time kick-off at Dunbar pitted the two top sides in the East of Scotland YFA Division 1 against each other in the glorious sunshine at New Countess Park – and it was Leith who edged the encounter.
The game started in typical cup final fashion with both coaches trying to settle their sides down, but to no avail.
Despite the outcome of the game, it was Tynecastle who pressed well thereafter.
After ten minutes, they found themselves with a good opportunity to take the lead in the tie. Joshua Rogers received the ball on the right side of the box and aimed for goal with a low shot, but the ball span across goal and narrowly wide of the post.
Tynie looked threatening and had another chance with 20 minutes on the clock – Fergus Lockhart sending his shot well over having collected the ball on the edge of the 18-yard area, putting too much on the effort.
As the first half progressed, Leith began to put their stamp on the game and looked a danger through double goalscorer Smith and Keith Murray.
It was this combination that could have brought about the opening goal, Smith crossing low from the right to Murray in the box, but the No.10 couldn’t direct it on target and after an awkward bounce the ball flew over the Tynie crossbar.
Leith were showing hunger and looked the most likely side to find a breakthrough before the referee blew for half time. Again it was Smith and Murray at large for Leith, as firstly Smith’s 25-yard shot went wide and then Murray rattled the crossbar with a volley following a corner kick.
Manager Steven Chalmers’ words at half time must have been to continue the way they finished the first period, as that is exactly what Leith did.
With four minutes played in the second period, Smith got his first of the evening.
Leith had possession of the ball around 30 yards from goal, the ball being fed to Smith outside of the box.
The physical forward powered his way into the box with the ball at his feet and he had one thing on his mind, shooting with force across the goalkeeper to finish in the bottom corner for 1-0.
The second half was surprisingly a low-key affair, with Leith looking to build on a slender one-goal advantage and Tynie looking to grab an equaliser to stay in the hunt for the trophy.
That goal was beyond their grasp, though, as with just a few minutes left, Leith wrapped up the game and the trophy with it as they made it 2-0.
A corner was whipped into the box from the right and cleared to the edge, but Leith got the ball back in first time over the Tynie defence, leaving Smith to slide in at the far post and slot home from a few yards out to complete his brace.
The last few minutes were played out, and at the end the jubilant Leith squad – and a few rowdy supporters – celebrated their triumph on the Hallhill pitch.
Leith Athletic: Kyle Rankin, Rhys Legget, Darren Linton, Connor Pont, Ross Nisbet, Bobe Boyd, Adam Hunter, Liam O’Donnel, Liam Smith, Keith Murray, Steven Froude, Sean MacPherson, Connor Kirkland, Todd Smith, John Sanderson, Euan Morrice, Shaun Spence, Greg Turnbull, Jed Grant, Stephen Baigan, Matthew Watson, Josh Riddel.
Tynecastle: Sean Diamond, Christopher Joyce, Greig Jardine, Stephen Lee, Scott Coleman, Den Crabbe, Daniel Gemmell, Fergus Lockhart, Euan Rodgers, Joshua Rogers, Saul Schulz-Keith, Craig Sutherland, Kevin Airlie, Elliott Lister, Ross MacNaughton, Lewis Hawkins, Jordan Dunsmore, Gavin Sullivan, Corey Gilmour, Ryan Williamson.