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Huxall holds nerve to seal fine Cup win in shoot-out!

Hull Juns 2 - 2 Town Juns (AET) Town win 6-5 on penalities.

Hull Juns 2 - 2 Town Juns (AET) Town win 6-5 on penalities. FA Youth Cup 2nd Round. TOWN'S talented teenagers confidently passed the 12-yard test to book an FA Youth Cup third-round home clash with Sunderland.

But John Dungworth's side will probably have to show more adventure in open play to have a chance of defeating the young Wearsiders at the McAlpine on Tuesday, December 3 (7.00).

It needed a late extra-time leveller from big centre-back David Mirfin - pushed up front in a last-ditch effort - to save the tie after Hull had hit back after going behind to Mark Sheridan's looping long- range opener after five minutes.

That set up a penalty shoot-out, and resurgent Town were more than up to the task.

Out of seven attempts, only one was missed, and Luke Caulfield's well-struck shot looked suspiciously like it hit the roof of the net before bouncing down and back out.

But Lincolnshire referee Keith Lawson waved away Town's claims, so denying victory after Joe Walsh, Matthew Young and 15-year-old duo Joe Shaw and David Walls had emphatically netted while keeper Jacon Giles blocked Hull's second spot kick by Simon Russell.

Mirfin sent Hull keeper Danny Harvey the wrong way after home left-back Peter Turnbull had netted the first penalty of sudden-death.

And when centre-back Alex Bishop blasted the next kick too high, Town substitute Gavin Huxall, also 15, showed maturity beyond his years to send Harvey the wrong way and seal the win.

It sparked scenes of jubilation among Huxall's teammates, who adopted a Brazilian-style huddle back in the centre circle, and also the Town Academy players who are too old to compete in this Under 18 competition but had come along to lend their support.

"I thought those lads coming along to support their younger colleagues is indicative of the spirit Gerry Murphy (Academy director) and John Dungworth (coach) have created," said watching Town director Geoff Headey.

"We were up against a bigger and older side, and the fact that we had four 15-year-olds involved (David Bold as well as Shaw, Walls and Huxall) bodes well.

"I thought David Mirfin was excellent, a captain who led by example, and Joe Walsh was a real battler in midfield."

In one of the last few games to be played at Boothferry Park before Hull's move to the state-of-the-art 25,400 Kingston Communications Stadium next month, Town got off to a flying start when keeper Harvey suffered a David Seaman-style lapse by coming out too far and palming Republic of Ireland youth cap Sheridan's speculative 25-yard lofted effort into his own net.

Although Caulfield, Walsh, Mirfin and Young subsequently had shots saved or blocked, Hull had the better of the first half.

Chris Hudson was just wide with a low drive, Walsh did enough to disrupt Alistair Benson when he was through on goal and Walls hacked Ed O'Neil's close-range shot off the line before Russell latched on to Benson's 44th-minute through ball and held off Walls before finding the top corner.

The second half was a more even affair, with Hull's closest chance coming when O'Neil's low shot was blocked on the line by Mirfin and Town's when Caulfield's rising shot was tipped over by Harvey.

Hull took the lead five minutes into extra time when Benson, who was born in Huddersfield but moved to Hull as a six-year-old, shot home from Fry's pass.

But Mirfin, a striker when he first joined Town, replied by converting Walsh's 114th-minute cross with a spectacular diving header.

Town: Giles, Walls, Hardy, Walsh, McCombe, Mirfin, Caulfield, Young, McAliskey (Huxall, 82), Sheridan (Shaw, 106), Collins (Bold, 106).

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