School sport: Balby 2 Thurstable 0

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Balby Carr’s high-flying girl’s football academy stars have today been crowned English Schools FA National Cup champions.

The under-18s squad exacted revenge on Colchester’s Thurstable Sports College who last year defeated Balby 1-0 in the same final.

Goals from Ellie Chandler and Chloe Dixon’s last minute strike sent Balby into wild celebrations at the Keepmoat Stadium this afternoon.

It took little time for Balby to open the scoring when Rosie Young’s well-timed lob came back off the upright with Chandler in the right place to tap home.

The Doncaster outfit seemed to make their pressure count despite a resilient Thurstable outfit who saw Ruby Baxter’s header come back off the post in the second half.

Brooke Smith then had a free-kick cannon back off the bar as Colchester’s Gemma Codling’s lob just went wide.

Balby later had a penalty shout denied before Molly Kelleher was lucky to escape punishment when she pulled back the Academy’s Young who would have been through on goal.

Substitute keeper Grace Thomas collected a rasping effort on the second attempt as Thurstable piled the pressure in the final stages of the game.

However, Balby countered as Colchester pushed forward and Leah Hardy played in Mills who rode the challenges, turning her final defender but then saw her shot saved well by Paige Wakefield.

But much to Balby’s delight, Dixon pounced on the rebound to fire in and send the trophy back to the Doncaster club for the second time in four years.

Balby Carr’s boys team were on the wrong end of an 8-1 defeat against Gateshead to send them out of the British Colleges Sport Elite League’s national play-offs stage.

The side had made it into the final eight of the competition but were undone at their home base in Weston Road.

See the Doncaster Free Press for full match reaction to both games, coming soon!

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