St Brigid’s hold on to take points

Antrim Minor Football League – Division 1

Dunloy 2-6 St Brigid’s 2-7

St Brigid’s withstood a spirited Dunloy fightback to earn a hard earned win in Tuesday night’s Antrim Minor Football League game at Pearse Park. When Shay Campbell pointed in the 54th minute St Brigid’s were five point clear and apparently home and dry, but from out of nowhere Dunloy grabbed a lifeline with and Eoghan McGrath point, followed by a goal from substitute Daithi Cree to leave just a point between the sides. The Cuchullains had a couple of decent chances to grab and equaliser in the time referee Marty Quinn added on at the end, but they failed to convert their chances and St Brigid’s held on for the win.

There was little between the sides in the first half as two good sides matched each other score for score. ‘Tuggy’ McGrath started the scoring with a point from play in the second minute, but two minutes later Thomas McCarney brought the Belfast boys back level. The home side appeared to have taken a grip on the game when Dairi Crawley scored a fantastic goal in the fifth minute, but the visitors bounced back two minutes later when centre back Shay Campbell joined the attack and drilled the ball low to the Cuchullains net.

Dunloy were to edge ahead on two more occasions as Crawley and McGrath sent over points, but each time St Brigid’s had an answer as Paul Bradley and Marcus Lynch found replies, but a point from McGrath in the final action of the half gave Dunloy a 1-4 to 1-3 lead at half time.

St Brigid’s were level soon after the restart when Bradley sent over a free and they edged ahead in the 35th minute when corner forward Ben Doherty pointed from close range. The Belfast boys appeared to be taking control when Marcus Lynch finished a good breakaway move by drilling the ball low to the Dunloy net in the 42nd minute and when Shay Campbell pointed again to put five between the sides they must have felt the battle was won. The gap stayed at five when Campbell and McGrath exchanged points and it all seemed straight forward for the visitors until Cree’s late intervention created a frantic finish which St Brigid’s were relieved to see out.

DUNLOY: Piaras McGarry, Ryan Maguire, Cathair McCloskey, Conal Kelly, Sean Scullion, Daithi McGuigan, Barry Scott, Ryan McFarline, Sean O’Neill, Rory Mullan, Conor McAleese, Eoghan McGrath, Padraig McGilligan, Dairi Crawley.

Subs – Daithi Cree

ST BRIGID’S: Declan Heery, Reuben Carleton, Calum Webb, James Turkington, Tiorleach Brolly, Shay Campbell, Tom Morrisey, Matthew Smyth, Ronan Boyle, James McKenna, Marcus Lynch, Paul Bradley, Ben Doherty, Rory Moore, Thomas McCarney.

Referee – Marty Quinn (St Enda’s)

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