Con Magees edge thrilling game

Senior Reserve Football Sheild Group 2

Con Magees 2-15 Moneyglass 5-5

As Antrim GAA threw off the shackles of Coronavirus and came out of hibernation this weekend, Glenravel and Moneyglass served up a most exciting game of football in the All County Reserve Football Shield that had just about everything – long range points, plenty of goals and a very tight finish which the locals just edged when it looked like they had been caught in the final furlong. Even the mid-summer midges seemed to have heard about the “no spectators” messaging and stayed away – something I’m sure both teams were delighted with.

Glenravel had squandered a few early chances before Declan Diamond scored on 6 minutes to register the first goal in the home team’s shiny new nets. Ciaran Kelly pointed for the visitors four minutes later but then the locals took control and scored eight points from play including some really fine long range efforts. Declan Diamond, Chris Laverty and Michael McQuillan all scored two each with Senan Black and Adam Neeson contributing the others. Moneyglass replied on 27 minutes with a free from ace marksman Niall Boyd before Declan Diamond brought first half proceedings to a close with a nice point to cap an excellent first half performance and leave the home side in a seemingly unassailable lead of 1-09 to 0-2.

Moneyglass went straight up the field from the second half throw in and pointed after thirty seconds but Aiden McCafferty settled home nerves with a point 4 minutes later. However the visitors started a purple patch and veteran full forward, Donal Laverty was chief architect as he sliced through the Glensmen several times leaving keeper Owen Marquess no chance. From the sixth to the seventeenth minute Moneyglass had recorded 3-01. Niall Boyd started the ball rolling with a point which was followed by two goals from Laverty and a goal from Conal Prenter to leave the home side heading to the water break just one point to the good now on a 1-12 to 3-5 scoreline. Glenravel had their own veteran marksman in Michael McQuillan who stretched the home team lead to three points with two very good points from play in quick succession on twenty and twenty one minutes. Back came the visitors with two more goals – one from Laverty to seal his hat trick and suddenly Moneyglass were leading the game by three points on a 1-14 to 5-05 scoreline. With just five minutes left it looked like the visitors would snatch victory but Declan Diamond popped over a point to leave two between them and another veteran, Paul Mulholland secure victory with a goalmouth scrambled goal right at the death.

Referree Karl Doherty marshalled the game well between two teams who genuinely seemed delighted to be back on the pitch again. For the home team the main men were Aiden McCafferty, Declan Diamond and Johnny Fyfe, all of whom kept the faith when it looked like a lost cause near the end. Donal Laverty and Niall Boyd impressed most for the visitors.

Teams

Glenravel:: Owen Marquess; Stevie Acheson, Neil McCafferty, Gerard Scullion, Aiden McKenna, Aiden McCafferty (0-01), Jonathan Fyfe, Adam Neeson (0-01), Daniel Black, David Birt, Declan Diamond (1-05), Senan Black (0-01), Martin McCarry (0-01), Michael McQuillan (0-03), Chris Laverty (0-02),
Subs: Paul Mulholland (1-01),

Moneyglass:: Danny McErlaine, Eoin McErlaine, Diarmuid Scullion, Callum McStocker, Kevin McPeake, Declan Neeson, Oisin Duffin, Ryan McGreevey, Ciaran Kelly (0-01), Ronan Neeson, Niall Boyd (0-03 0-02 frees), Stephen Magill, Donal Laverty (3-00), Ross Donnelly.
Subs:: Conal Prenter (1-00) Gary Murray (1-01)

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