With both the Under 15’s and Under 17’s games postponed this weekend’s youth football fix was provided by younger team’s double-header against Hamilton Accies at New Douglas Park, this started with the Under 13’s game in the morning.
Hamilton Accies 0 Rangers 6
The Rangers youngsters took an early lead when Andy Rodden advanced on the left and his cross was headed past the keeper by Niyah Joseph. The home side tried to reply with a good run along the left hand byline and the shot from a narrow angle forced a save from Nicky Hogarth low to his left.
Rangers doubled their lead on seventeen minutes, Mark Leonard found Danny Finlayson breaking forward on the left, his cross broke kindly for Andy Rodden inside the box, his effort was blocked but Niyah Joseph was on hand to net from close range. Seven minutes into the second period saw Rangers increase their lead, Kieran McKechnie cut in from the right before beating the keeper with his shot from the right hand angle of the box.
Five minutes later Rangers scored a superb fourth, a short corner on the left was worked to Mark Leonard just outside the box, he found Dylan Patterson on the left side on the penalty area and he found the net with a sublime chip over the keeper. Niyah Joseph then turned creator, his pass finding Nathan Patterson breaking into the box on the right to force the Accies keeper to save to his left at the expense of a corner.
Hamilton threatened with an attack through the inside right channel deep into Rangers box with Nicky Hogarth saving low to his left. With two minutes of the period remaining Rangers grabbed a fifth, Ben Williamson fed Nathan Patterson on the right and his pass into the box found Niyah Joseph on hand to shoot past the keeper and record his hat-trick.
Just before the turn around in the final period Dylan Patterson scored his second superb goal of the game, Harry Cochrane passed to him on the right side of the box, he went passed two defenders before placing a shot beyond the keeper and into the far corner. Right and the end he came close to being the second Rangers player to grab a hat-trick, Aiden Gibb’s cross from midway inside the Accies half on the left saw Dylan Patterson’s header touched wide of the right hand post.
Full-Time:- Hamilton Accies 0 Rangers 6
Rangers Squad:- Nicky Hogarth (Gk), Nathan Patterson, Andy Rodden, Aidan Gibb, Danny Finalayson, Lewis McGrattan, Kieran McKechnie, Billy Gilmour, Niyah Joseph, Dylan Patterson, Mark Leonard, Harry Cochrane, Rhuaridh McIntyre, Kyle Ewing, Ben Williamson, Zak Butterworth.
Hamilton Accies 2 Rangers 2
A quick trip to then bookies and back in time for the Under 14’s kick-off and 12:30. Hamilton Accies took the lead on fifteen minutes, the striker broke down the left deep into the box, Lewis Muir blocked his shot but when the Rangers defence eventually forced the ball out of their penalty box the Accies midfielder sent a superb shot into the top corner. Rangers missed a great opportunity to equalise a couple of minutes later, Mati Zattafarra sent Zak Rudden through on goal but his was denied by the keeper advancing from his goal to block with his legs.
A couple of minutes before the end of the first period the home side doubled their lead, their No. 10 won possession on the right before advancing into the box and giving Lewis Muir no chance with a shot into the top corner. Rangers eventually got the upper hand in the second half of the second period pinning the home side back in their own half, Scott Gray and Aaron Reid combined on the left and when the latter’s cross found Stephen Kelly at the back post he was denied by the keeper diving to his right to save.
With ten minutes of the period remaining a superb Jack Thomson pass sent Zak Rudden clear and he was again foiled by the Accies keeper blocking with his legs. The next chance came when Jack Pow won the ball on the right before crossing for Zak Rudden to head narrowly over.
In the final minute of the period Lewis Mayo’s long pass found Zak Rudden on the right, the Rangers striker flicked the ball over a defender before crossing for Mati Zattafarra to volley for goal but the home keeper was well placed to make a fine save. Rangers eventually made the break through four minutes into the final period, Michael Hewitt’s throw in found its way to Jack Thomson via Jack Pow and his shot from the right side of the penalty area was across the keeper and into the far top corner.
The home side relieved a bit of pressure and tested Darren Montgomery with a long-range effort that the Rangers keeper stretched to hold under his bar. Just after the turn around Accies came every close to increasing their lead, the attack came down the right and when their striker prodded the ball past Darren Montgomery a goal looked likely until Michael Hewitt got back and his clearance rebounded off the left hand post and clear.
Rangers took heart from that and when Aaron Reid played the ball up to Zak Rudden his flick on released Mati Zattafarra inside the box but he delayed his shot and the Accies defender got in a challenge to clear for a corner. With five minutes remaining Rangers drew level , Matthew Shiels got on the end of Michael Hewitt’s cross from midway inside the Accies half to head past the keeper.
Rangers came close to grabbing a winner, Jack Thomson’s corner was deep beyond the far post to find Lewis Mayo arriving late to volley for goal with the Accies defender clearing from the goal line.
Full-Time:- Hamilton Accies 2 Rangers 2
Rangers Squad:- Lewis Muir (Gk), Darren Montgomery (Gk), Michael Hewitt, Scott Gray, Jack Thomson, Lewis Mayo, Cammy Wray, Scott Blacklaw, Mati Zattafarra, Zak Rudden, Stephen Kelly, Aaron Reid, Jack Pow, Matthew Shiels
Footnote:- A Rangers Under 16’s side recorded a 4-2 win over Dumabarton on Friday night with goals from Kyle Clark (2), Grant Nelson & Max Ashmore.