The North Under-17’s and Under-14’s defeated their South rivals in two very competitive and close encounters at An-Aird, Fort William last Sunday. All the teams were well supported on a sunny afternoon in Lochaber where the cream of Scotland’s shinty talent was on display.

The U-14 Fraser MacPhee Memorial Cup was once again won by the North of Scotland by 8 goals to 1 but the match was a lot closer than the score line suggests. Beauly’s Louie Maclennan got the North off to a great start with an early goal, and that was quickly followed by a well taken goal from Jacob Bain. The South responded well and made it 2.1 when a long ball was played into the heart of the North defense, taking a deflection of a North player and found its way into the roof of the net giving Hayden Taylor Ramsay no chance in the North goals.

Caberfeidh’s Ali Taylor quickly restored the North 2 goal advance on 29 minutes reacting quicker to a loose ball in the box to flick past the excellent South goalkeeper Mark Hewitt. 5 minutes later the classy Joe Coyle got on the scoresheet with a backhand strike from the edge of the box, to bring the half-time score to 4.1 to the North.

The second half started with the South on the attack driven on by the impressive Zac Menzies but it was the North that got the next goal from the stylish and clinical Louie Maclennan. Further second half goals came from Ali Taylor, Toby Thain and James Coyle bringing the final score to 8.1.

Rosemary MacPhee presented the trophy to the winning North captain Jacob who had an excellent game at Full-Centre.

The U-17 match was a classic encounter with both teams giving their all from the first to the last minute. The South took an early lead on 11 minutes through a goal from the impressive Euan Campbell of Oban Celtic. Minutes later the same player forced an excellent save from North Goalkeeper Calum MacMillan. The North responded with a wonderful goal from distance from Shane O’Rua on 25 minutes. With chances at both ends it was the North who took the lead just before half-time through the excellent Shane O’Rua.

The second 40 minutes was played at a frantic pace with play raging from end to end and chances going a begging at both ends. The North got the all-important next goal on 68 minutes and what a goal it was. That man Shane O’Rua received the ball with his back to goal and on the turn his first-time volley found the back of the net. The South responded and Mathew Sloss was unlucky not to find his name on the scoresheet. The last goal of the game was scored by wing-center Tristen Ross, who got on the end of a cross ball to expertly flick the ball past the South goalkeeper to bring the final score to 4.1 to the North.

Credit must go to both sets of players for producing such an enthralling encounter.

Rosemary MacPhee presented the cup to the North captain Seonaidh Macleod.

Special thanks to the MacPhee Family for their continued sponsorship of the U14 and U17 Youth representative matches, Fort William Shinty Club for the use of their excellent facilities and the referees and match official’s.

FRASER MACPHEE Rosemary MacPhee (left) and Arran MacPhee (right) with the North U14 Representative Team who won the Fraser MacPhee Memorial Trophy on Sunday. Photograph: Iain Ferguson,
NORTH V SOUTH U17 The winning U17 North team. Photograph: Iain Ferguson,