Arran cup final heartache after penalty shoot-out

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Arran AFC 3 Killie Athletic 3
Killie won 4-2 on penalties

ASAFA cup final

Arran’s final game of the season ended in heartache when they lost the ASAFA cup final in a penalty shoot-out.

The Arran boys went into the game held at Ardeer stadium in Stevenston on Friday night full of spirit, but the opposition – Killie Athletic – were a tough side.

The match started frantically with both sides misplacing passes, but the first big talking point was on six minutes when Killie played a through ball and the goalkeeper, running at full speed, caught the ball outside the box, leading to him being sent off.  Arran were down to 10 men with 80-plus minutes to play.

Killie made pay to the numerical advantage and went in at the break 2-0 up. A change of formation at half time, to steady the ship, seemed to do the world of good. Arran went out and got a quick goal from Donald Park to make it 2-1 and from then on it was end-to-end action.

Then came a moment of bewilderment when the linesman flashed his flag for a penalty to Killie. Not even the Killie players could believe it, but up steps the Killie forward to make it 3-1.

Arran battled hard and with three minutes to go Joel Small stepped up with a shot to make it 3-2.

Arran pushed and in the final seconds Danny Head jumped high to head the ball in to the net to make it 3-3.

Within seconds the final whistle took it to penalties but unfortunately it was not Arran’s night as Killie won 4-2.

The cup final man of the match was Arran’s Johnny Sloss.

A spokeman for the team said: ‘From the whole squad, we would like to thank the massive support who pushed us all the way through the whole game and most importantly the whole season, they were absolutely amazing.

‘In Arran AFC’s first season, a second finish in the league and a cup final to show – I’m sure everyone would say that its been some effort, and they have done the whole island proud. Congratulations to Killie Athletic on their cup win.’

The spokeman added: ‘As the season has come to its conclusion, on behalf Arran AFC players, we would like to make a special mention to those who have been with the squad through out the season; they are our club secretary Marc Head, assistant secretary Dorren McNulty, fitness coach Laura Aitcheson, photographer Tam Borland, and to the Brodick Golf Club for our home games at beginning of the season. You have made our year even more special. Massive thank you from the squad.’