Flying start and blistering finish seals it for Portglenone

Reserve Football Cup Group 1

Casement’s 4-13 Kicham’s 1-11

A flying start and a blistering finish saw Casement’s Portglenone take the points in this high scoring and entertaining Reserve Cup win over Kickham’s Creggan at O’Cahan Park tonight. The home side raced into a 1-2 to 0-0 lead by the 8th minute with their goal coming from Niall Kelly.

Frank McAuley finally got the visitors on their way from a pointed free in the 11th minute but the Ports replied with a free of their own from Ronan Kelly and they might have been further ahead but their insistence on going for goal cost them scores with the Creggan defence getting in a couple of vital blocks.

A point from Paddy Carey moved the Casements 1-4 to 0-1 ahead at the first water break and at this stage they were in almost total control but the visitors hit back strongly as play resumed and they started to take the game to the opposition.

A great point from Frank McAuley sent them on their way and when the impressive Tiarnan McAteer got in for a goal in the 19th minute we suddenly had a game on our hands. Brian McManus retired injured following the goal to be replaced by Jordan Hyndman but the Creggan pressure continued.

Patrick McAuley volleyed over to cut the deficit to two before Colin Lordan eased the pressure with a good point at the other end. Significantly Creggan missed a number of scoreable frees at this stage and a pointed free from Ronan Kelly and another from play by Ciaran McKenna saw the Casement’s lead 1-7 to 1-3 at the short whistle.

Portglenone continued to call the shots at the start of the second half and looked again to be taking complete control as Colin Lordan and Niall Kelly added early points to move them six ahead but once again the visitors found a response as they scored six unanswered points to bring themselves right back into contention.

Caolan McCann, Paddy McAuley, Tiarnan McAteer, Lee Johnston 0-2 and Malachy McIvor were the men on target for the Staffordstown Road side and suddenly the contest was tied at 1-9 to 1-9 and the momentum had swung decisively in favour of the visitors.

At this point Portglenone had introduced Corey McLaughlin and Ronan Kelly punished a foul on McLaughlin with a point before getting on the end of a Ciaran McKenna pass to fire past Tom Johnston and the home side had moved four in front prior to the second water break.

Could Creggan stage another comeback? That question was soon answered as Portglenone finished with a barrage of scores with Ciaran McKenna firing to the net in the 22nd and 25th minute and Ronan Kelly, Niall Kelly and Stephen Kelly adding points to secure a convincing victory.

Portglenone: Brian McManus, Kevin O’Kane, Declan Dobbin, Ruairi McAleese, Gerard McAleese, Paddy Carey, Paddy Graffin, Callum Lynch, Michael Donnelly, Ronan Kelly, Ciaran McKenna, BJ Donnelly, Adrian Carey, Niall Kelly, Colin Lordan. Subs: Conor Magee for Gerard McAleese, Jordan Hyndman for Brian McManus, Cory McLaughlin, Stephen Kelly for Adrian Carey, Owen Kelly for Colin Lordan,

Creggan: Tom Johnston, John McAuley, Conor McAuley, Jake McAteer, Declan McCann, Dermot McCann, Dylan Hinfey, Sean Donnelly, Patrick McAuley, Michael Murray, Tiarnan McAteer, Diarmuid Mulholland, Lee Johnston, Frank McAuley, Kaelan McCann. Subs: Peter Crilly, Michael Murray, Malachy McIvor, Sean McAuley

Referee: John Moran (Aldergrove)

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