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Blackburn team dedicate success to memory of Adam Rogers
ST Mary’s College Old Boys dedicated their cup final success to former team-mate Adam Rogers - and they did him proud.
Adam, who was tragically killed by a single punch in a Blackburn town centre attack in July, 2009, was a key member of the team and a close friend of the Saints players.
And it was goals from Scott Mullin, Dave Walker and a brace from substitute Joel Mason that secured the emotional victory - but this was a final both teams played their part.
Sydney Street can count themselves unlucky to have lost by so much as it was a 10-minute second half purple patch that was ultimately their undoing.
The Saints started brightly and impressed with some slick passing and movement but it was an error by Sydney keeper George Riding that led to the opening goal.
Scott Mullin raced on to a superb, defence splitting pass by Anthony Wardle and his low centre skidded off the greasy surface and through the grasp and legs of Riding.
In fairness, Sydney Street dealt with the early blow well and played their way back in to the final - although they could easily have been 2-0 down before eventually drawing level.
Riding made up for his early error with a smart save to deny Mark Hope before Ben Walmsley crashed a shot against the bar and Ethan Walsh twice cleared off his own line.
But Sydney had their chances. Christopher Marshall had to be quick off his line to deny Dave Burns then held on to a firm header from Phil Corke who then curled an another effort over the bar after good work from Liam Duxbury.
But they were on level terms five minutes before the break when Burns scampered clear but was felled by Marshall as he attempted to round the keeper.
Marshall was booked for the foul and Duxbury dispatched from the spot with aplomb.
With both keepers taking centre stage in the opening two goals, the third was all about the power and precision of Dave Walker who skipped between two challenges and thundered a shot beyond the grasp of Riding.
Unfortunately for Sydney Street, they went from 2-1 to 4-1 down in no time at all. Saints sub Joel Mason had only been on the pitch a matter of minutes when he found himself in the clear to hold off a late challnge to slide the ball home.
Soon after, Wardle’s long ball across the six yard area evaded everyone bar Mason who tapped in at the far post.
But again, Sydney Street deserve every credit for making a fight of it - none more so that skipper Lynden Aspinall and Duxbury.
And the two combined to nearly pull a goal back, with Aspinall heading a Duxbury free kick just wide.
Mark Hilliam then raced clear but could not keep his shot down before Duxbury forced a finger tip save out of Marshall.
But there was to be no denying the Saints and their tribute to their pal Adam.
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