YAC Final: Shrewsbury Town 1-2 Luton TownATTENDANCE: 622
BOOKED: Bakinson, Cotter
GOALS: Hinds 50, 70
SUBS NOT USED: Harry Bean, Tiernan Parker, George Murray,
LUTON TOWN: Liam Gooch (GK), Alex Atkinson, James Justin, Frankie Musonda, Akin Famewo, Cameron McJannet, Josh Brown (Kyran McGhan-George, 76), Kavan Cotter, Freddie Hinds, Jack Snelus, Tyreeq Bakinson.
GOALS: Gallagher, 78.
SUBS NOT USED: Jake Kerins, Jacob Rammell.
TOWN: Charlie Bannister (GK), Ryan Sears, Joel Bonner, George Hughes, Callum Grogan (C), Chris Gallagher, Jack Butts (George Hassall, 54), John McAtee, Ethan Jones, Jack Watts (Charley Higgs, 70), Matthew Jones (Ryan Barnett, 62).
FULL-TIME: SHREWSBURY TOWN 1-2 LUTON TOWN
But as the Luton defence swarmed him, he was unable to connect well with the shot and it trickled into the hands of Gooch and with that, came the full-time whistle.
At the other end, Shrewsbury managed to fashion one more chance as Higgs latched on to a bouncing ball in the box.
As the game ticked over into added time, Shrewsbury continued to look for a way through but it was Luton who went closest to scoring again, with Cotter dragging a good chance in the final minute.
McAtee went had a half chance as the clock ticked down but his quick shot on the turn was unfortunately straight at Gooch.
Northern Ireland youth international Chris Gallagher stepped up and confidently placed his spot kick high into the ‘keeper’s right hand corner to set up a nervy final 11 minutes.
Ian Dawes rolled his final throw of the dice as he sent on Charlie Higgs for Jack Watts and just seconds later, Town had a way back into the game as Higgs went down under the challenge of Luton substitute Kyran McGhan-George.
But just as Shrewsbury looked to be finding a way back into the game, they were hit with the sucker punch as Cotter found Hinds who found space in the box to spin his marker and fire low past Bannister.
Shrewsbury were certainly starting to ask questions of their opponents and from the resulting corner Ethan Jones looked to be a split second away from equalising as he looked to latch on to a ball in the box, only to be denied by a perfectly timed tackle from Akin Famewo.
Chris Gallagher’s perfectly weighted pass played in substitute Barnett on the right but his dangerous low cross was hacked away for a corner.
But it was another substitute that came close to drawing the home side level when George Hassall made space and bent in a delightful effort that bounced narrowly wide of the Gooch’s far post.
Shrewsbury made their second change of the evening with Matthew Jones being replaced by Ryan Barnett.
Watts continued to impress for Shrewsbury in attack and his neat play with John McAtee allowed the striker to stand up a dangerous looking cross to the back stick which headed behind for a corner.
The game had certainly livened up now and Shrews stopper Bannister had to be alert to palm away Snelus’ 20-yard effort.
The impressive Watts fed Jones in the penalty box who was denied by a low smart stop from Gooch, who managed to keep hold of the striker’s left-footed effort.
Ian Dawes decided to make his first change of the night, with striker George Hassall replacing Jack Butts and seconds later, the home side almost found themselves on level terms.
The Hatters went close to doubling their lead when Cotter finds room in the box but his powerful shot is deflected narrowly over.
A long ball over the top from Justin was misjudged by Shrews captain Callum Grogan and Hinds had the composure to bring the ball down and slot it past Bannister.
But minutes later Luton would be celebrating as they took the lead through striker Freddie Hinds.
Four minutes into the restart and Kavan Cotter’s cross caused panic in the Shrews backline before Tyreeq Bakinson curled his effort over.
As the sun set down beside the Greenhous Meadow, Luton seemed to have bounced back from conceding those two quick chances at the end of the first half.
HALF-TIME: SHREWSBURY TOWN 0-0 LUTON TOWN
And seconds before the half-time whistle Jones was again involved as his hustle and determination created room for Watts who, with a man up against him, took his shot early and forced a comfortable save for Gooch.
Firstly Jones, latched on to Watts’ pass before cutting inside and drilling the ball low towards Liam Gooch’s goal, but his effort went straight into the hands of the accepting Luton stopper.
With the fourth official signalling one added minute, Town stepped on the gas and created two decent openings in quick succession.
As the half wore on, Shrewsbury started to find their rhythm and were it not for some good defending from Luton, Town forward Ethan Jones may have been in the clear from John McAtee’s pass.
Luton’s Jack Snelus was starting to see more of the ball and a quickly taken short corner saw his cross flash across the face of Charlie Bannister’s goal with no-one there to poke it home.
Luton were starting to get a hold of the game and they had another sight of goal moments later when James Justin showed good feet to make some room before seeing his shot go high into the stands.
The first sight of goal arrived just before the quarter hour mark and it came for the visitors. Freddie Hinds rode two tackles before feeding the ball to Alex Atkinson who struck the far post with his 25-yard drive.
In a tense and nervy opening half both teams seemed more concerned about getting a feel for the ball than taking the risk of trying to force a chance.
Dawes’ side were without full-back Callum Roberts due to the injury suffered during the Shropshire Senior Cup Final success two weeks ago but were otherwise at full strength, with Ethan Jones and Callum Grogan recalled to the squad after being rested on Friday.
Manager Ian Dawes made a host of changes from last Friday’s 1-1 draw with Accrington Stanley in the Midland Youth Alliance League.
A Freddie Hinds second-half double was enough to ensure heartbreak amongst the Shrewsbury Town Youth Team as they went
A second-half double from Hatter striker Freddie Hinds was enough for Luton to claim the cup despite Gallagher’s penalty halving the deficit with 20 minutes remaining.
A second-half Chris Gallagher penalty was not enough to claim the Football League Youth Alliance Cup as Shrewsbury went down 2-1 to Luton Town at the Greenhous Meadow.