On a cloudy afternoon and a relatively heavy Magic Park, Hamilton Olympic contested the 2015 NPL Grand Final against Edgeworth Eagles in front of 3,600 spectators and were narrowly defeated by 2-0.
In the first 15 minutes both teams cancelled each other out with physical exchanges and with no clear cut opportunities for a goal.
The first hint of a goal-mouth activity came in the 15th when Brody Taylor whipped in a cross from the right across the face of the Olympic goal but without any player from Edgeworth in the area to poke in the ball in.
Olympic’s first opportunity came from a Simon Mooney free kick which dipped and swerved before deflecting off the goalkeeper’s body!
Edgeworth followed this up on the half hour mark when Bren Hammel broke into the area and sent in a cross which initially Danny Ireland was unable to hold, inviting Brody Taylor to launch himself at the ball but being unable to send it into the Olympic net.
The final opportunity of the half came to Bren Hammel who receives a fine through ball from the midfield but whose shot is wide of Danny Ireland’s goal.
The game is physical and scrappy with neither team using the full width of the field with their wide players.
The second half begins with both teams continuing to cancel each other out.
After ten minutes of play Ayden Brice receives a great ball inside the area and as soon as an Olympic defender attempts to challenge him, he falls to the ground, inviting the referee to award a penalty!
From the ensuing penalty, Bren Hammel sends Danny Ireland the wrong way to record a 1-0 lead for Edgeworth.
Olympic tries to reply in kind but is unable to penetrate, particularly through its wide players.
As the clock ticks away, Pat Brown is withdrawn and his place is taken by Andrew Swan, who leaves the left back position to Cody Lucas.
Olympic continue to attack but are unable to create clear cut opportunities for an equaliser.
Mason Campbell leaves the game and is replaced by Alex Tserepas as the Olympic bench throw everything in attack to try and salvage a goal that will send the game into extra time.
During a sustained Edgeworth attack in which Olympic’s defence fails to clear, Brody Taylor sends in a shot which sees the ball come off the post and into Danny Ireland’s net!
With a 2-0 lead and only two minutes of regular time on the clock, the only thing that Edgeworth have time for, is to have Luke Walker sent off with a second yellow card.
Olympic continued trying until the final whistle but it wasn’t meant to be.