Rochdale’s under-14 side were deservedly crowned Floodlit Trophy champions on Wednesday evening, after beating Bolton Wanderers on penalties.
After the match finished 1-1, the game went straight to spot kicks and goalkeeper Ollie Brockbank was on hand to twice deny the Trotters from 12-yards to help seal the victory on home turf.
Bolton took an early lead at the Crown Oil Arena, scoring an opener from a free-kick after 10 minutes, with the set-piece on the edge of the area curled into the bottom corner of the net.
Dale responded superbly well, though, and had a golden opportunity to level proceedings just two minutes later. Anisio Jesus cut the ball back for Jadel Yaduat who sliced his shot wide.
Rochdale were on top and Ethan Williams stung the palms of the Trotters goalkeeper with a 25-yard free-kick before Dale went on to equalise in the 21st minute. It was a great finish by Yaduat. He turned, took a touch and rifled the ball into the roof of the net.
Jesus and Yaduat, caused problems throughout the first half and they linked up again with 25 minutes on the clock. This time Yaduat took a touch to bring the ball onto his left foot before firing over.
Before the half was out, the visitors had a shot from the edge of the area held, while Dale curled a set-piece over the bar.
HT | ROCHDALE 1-1 BOLTON WANDERERS
Rochdale were dominant after the break. The defence were resolute, limiting Bolton in their attack, while forcing the opposition goalkeeper into a number of saves.
Shortly after the re-start, Liam Anderson had a shot held at the near post and Jesus also had a shot kept out after good work down the right.
Bolton hit a snap shot narrowly wide on 65 minutes, before Dale Williams weaved his way up the middle of the pitch and had a shot blocked into the hands of the ‘keeper.
It would have been cruel if Rochdale had lost the game, and Brockbank made sure that it would at least go to penalties, palming away a powerful shot from just inside the area and pouncing on it, on 75 minutes.
With a minute remaining, Anderson clipped an effort from the edge of the area but the goalkeeper was his equal.
FT | ROCHDALE 1-1 BOLTON WANDERERS
With the game level after 90 minutes, the match went straight to penalties.
Bolton scored one, missed one and had another two saved by Brockbank, as Rochdale netted all three of theirs.
The players were presented with a trophy by Academy Director Andrew Kelly.
Bolton | I, X (saved), X (saved), X (miss);
Rochdale | I, I, I