ACFL Division 2B
St.Patrick’s Lisburn 1.08 v 1.14 St.Joseph’s Glenavy.
Going into this game the home side playing at their home ground on Kirkwood Road knew they would be playing division three football next season. On the other hand the visitors knew their division 2 place had been secured for another season. After a close first half the game was finely balanced but the second half belonged to the Chapel Hill side.
The visitors our scored their hosts by ten points to 1.03. At half time the referee made the score 0.05 to 0.04 in Lisburn’s favour, even though both sides had the score level at five apiece.
Corner forward Conor Dixon got the home side up and running with an excellent point before the ever reliable Michael McCourt had the scores level with a pointed free. Francis McMeel put his side back in front with a point from play but Glenavy moved ahead with a pointed free by Michael McCourt and two from open play from Niall McCann and Ciaran Loney (this was the disputed point). Back came the side in blue and gold with three of their own from Conor Dixon, Mark Torbitt and a pointed free from Francis McMeel to put their side one in front once more. Michael McCourt pointed a free as the halftime whistle blew to leave the score 0-5 to 0-4 in the home side’s favour.
The second half started with a Francis McMeel pointed free and Lisburn were looking good. Could they go on to record a second victory after last week’s win in Glenravel? Glenavy soon put paid to that notion. James Gallagher started the fight back with a long distance point and team captain Ciaran Loney stroked a beauty through the upright to put the orange men one up. Fergus Cunningham, who had replaced the injured Michael Johnston at half-timereplied for St. Joseph’s from a placed ball. Back came the lads in blue and gold with a point from Mark Torbitt to level the scores at 7 apiece and it still looked anyone’s game.
The visitors hit a purple patch at this point however, scoring 1.06 without reply to virtually put the game out of reach of their opponents. Niall McCann and James Gallagher hit a brace a piece and Fergus Cunningham struck a good point from a difficult angle. Ciaran Loney added to his side’s tally which left the visitors leading by double scores as Aaron McGarry replaced Thomas Gallagher and with his first kick of the ball he helped himself to an opportunist goal. To their credit back came the hosts and were rewarded with a goal from the penalty spot expertly taken by Conor Dixon. Mark Torbitt had the final say with a point to leave the visitors winning by 1.14 v 1.08.
It has been a difficult season for both sides and let’s hope next year will be more fruitful. The final league game of the season will be on Wednesday with a home game for St.Patrick’s against Rasharkin and St.Joseph’s travelling to near neighbours Aldergrove.
St.Patrick’s: Peter O’Neill, Shane McEvoy, Thomas Burns, Mark Torbitt, Sean Casey, Aaron McDonald; Ben McMullan, Niall Ward; Eoin Fay, Josh McMullan; Declan Burns; Conor Dixon, Mark Chemek, Francis McMeel; Mark Kennedy
St.Joseph’s: Donard Shannon; Ruairi Forester; Conor Hamill; Ryan Phillips; Patrick Gallagher; Charles Gallagher; Peter Traynor; Ciaran Loney; Michael Johnston (Fergus Cunningham. Ben McCambridge); Niall McCann; Michael McCourt; (Jack Hill); Anthony Gallagher; Thomas Gallagher (Aaron McGarry); James Gallagher; Fergal Henry
Referee: Colin Mallon Aghagallon