From Recreation Park, Alloa
November 4 2012
SWFL 2nd Division, Play-off final
Dunfermline 0 Hearts 2
Scorers: Kidd 17, Piaskowski 90.
HEARTS have been crowned ‘champion of champions’, following a 2-0 win over Dunfermline during play-offs to determine teams promoted to the second-top tier of Scottish women’s football, the Scotland-wide First Division.
After Dunfermline and Hearts had last week both won their promotional play-off matches (against Spartans Reserves and Murieston, respectively), it was time to lock horns in a showpiece game where the nerves could be set aside.
Hearts had gone into last week’s play-off as winners of the south-east section of the Second Division, while Dunfermline had done so as east section winners. They had already met during the season, in the divisional League Cup, with Hearts winning narrowly on their way to lifting the silverware.
And again, it was a close-run thing, with Gemma Piaskowski only making the tie safe with seconds remaining.
Hearts began by pushing captain, Megan Paterson, into midfield and it was Paterson who was involved in the first meaningful action when her well-directed header from a Piaskowski corner was cleared off the line by the far post defender, Jayne Clason.
Throughout, Kara Kidd had her chances in front of goal, including in the 43rd minute, when her shot was pushed away by the feet of Dunfermline keeper, Angela Comrie. But she did convert, in the 17th minute, and how. From just outside the 18-yard box, she drove forward, evaded the challenge of one defender and weaved around the ‘keeper, to knock the ball into an empty net.
A dangerous cross from Dunfermline’s Laura Yuill, in the 27th minute, had Hearts – who play their home games at Tranent, East Lothian – worried but not as much as in the 78th minute when, after giving the ball away, they had to scramble clear.
With the final whistle looming, Piaskowski had a chance to extend Hearts’ lead, only to shoot wide. But moments later, she was sliding the ball, low from the left, to seal the victory.
Later, in the game to decide the final promotion place, Murieston defeated Spartans Reserves 4-0.
Dunfermline (r-to-l): Comrie; McColl, MacFarlane (Halliday 68), Fairley, Tweedie (c); Clason (Walker 23), Martin (Finlay 10), McQuade, Cowden (Sloan 52); Yuill, Ross (Pullar 71). Sub not used: Shepherd.
Hearts (r-to-l): Esson; Cunningham, Reilly, Wilson, Young; Anderson, Paterson (c) Fraser, Honjigawa; Kidd, Piaskowski. Sub not used: Hogg.
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Contact: Mike Wilson