King James Academy are one step closer to an incredible national football feat.

They have two sides into the semi-finals of the National Cup and both are confident about reaching the final.

The boys did just that last year where they ended up as runners-up in a match played at The Hawthorns, home of West Bromwich Albion.

Royston Crow: King James Academy's U16 boys' team. Picture: KJAKing James Academy's U16 boys' team. Picture: KJA (Image: King James Academy)

For the U15 girls though, this is the furthest they have ever gone.

Both teams were successful in their away trips in the quarter-final, the girls winning 4-0 at Bridgnorth in Shropshire. 

And despite the journey, it was KJA who dominated the early possession and got a golden start, Katie Coghlan latching on to a through ball and stroking the ball into the far corner from the edge of the box.

The momentum brought a second, Jessica Darcy cutting in from the left wing and curling a shot over the keeper.

That's how things stayed until the second half where, despite the squads cancelling each other out, KJA managed to get a third.

Mia Geldart's cross-field pass found Maddy McGee in some space and after a quality first touch, she created time to get a powerful shot away that went into the bottom corner.

That finished the game off although King James did put a cherry on top, McGee's clever turn and shot crashing in off the crossbar.

The Year 11 boys' victory was far more of a battle though as they needed penalties to overcome King Edwards of Guildford.

They the girls, they too started very fast, racing into a 2-0 lead via goals from Jake Emmett, both set up by Alfie Smith who beat his man on both occasions before passing it through.

The home team certainly made note of this as they then man-marked Emmett and put a sweeper in behind him and the Surrey side then took control of the ball.

They struggled to create any clear-cut chances though with Huw Maslen and captain Harry Ogilvie at the heart of the defence looking solid.

The odd half chance they did fashion was dealt with by keeper Corey Howe.

They did get through once just before the break and with 10 minutes remaining the home side pushed on, winning a number of free kicks and corners.

They were able to bundle in an equaliser late on and take the game into extra-time, although the introduction of subs like Carlie Woods and Lenny Murray for Royston did tighten things up and get them going forward.

Neither side could get a winner and it meant penalties.

King James went first and the standard of penalties was high with Emmett, Ogilvie, Pendrick, Maslen and Lowden all beating the keeper.

King Edward scored their first four penalties but the decisive kick went over the bar to send KJA through.

Head of PE and sport at the school, Rob Dowler, said: "It's amazing to have two sides in the National Cup semi-finals.

"Collectively the players involved have worked really hard to get to this stage and I am sure this will continue in the next round."

The last four matches will see the Royston school on the road, the boys going to Dunstable and the girls off to Lincoln.

King James squads

U16 boys: C.Howe, H.Turner, S.Sathees, H.Maslen, Z.Wellington, H.Ogilvie (capt), C.Woods, J.Lowden, J.Corthine, T.Pendrick (vice-captain), J.Emmett, A.Smith, L.Murrey. 

U15 girls: E.Wilkinson (capt), E.Clare, E.Knight, B.Murray, K.Asling, M.Geldart, K.Coghlan, J.D’Arcy, M.Burling, M.McGee, G.Rowe, A.Lissen, F.Pitts, R.Osbourne.