Homefit Antrim Football League Division One
Kickham’s Creggan 0-10 Erin’s Own Cargin 0-10
Honours ended even at Creggan on Wednesday evening as a late Ruairi Mc Cann point, his 8th in all, in a close fought affair ensured the county champions grabbed a share of the spoils.
The Cargin men had led from flag-fall and a superb Kevin ‘Kobo’ O’ Boyle 58th minute point after a positive combination looked like the winner for the League holders, but the home side were far from finished and a precision based strike from the ever accurate wing man in added time earned his side a share of the spoils.
Creggan looked the more positive in the opening phase but as they failed to locate the target on a couple of occasions it was their visitors who were first to register.
A Paul McCann fetch at midfield, which was fiercely contested saw his lay off to the advancing Kevin O’ Boyle place Pat Shivers to open the scoring with a fine point.
As the home side continued to miss a further opening their visitors seized advantage and back to back points from a Tomas Mc Cann 45 and another from the ever reliable Pat Shivers saw the Toome men at 0-03 to 0-00.
The pace laden Mc Cann had been denied a goal after a slick approach and a Pat Shivers lay off sent him in on the posts with Oisin Kerr making a splendid save at the cost of the ‘45’.
The home side gaining an advantage around midfield for a time opened account when Ruairi Mc Cann split the posts from a 30 metre free in the 11th minute and added another from a close range offering a minute later to settle the butterflies within the green and gold.
Cargin more expedient in front of the posts went further ahead again with another special strike from the excellent Shivers from another Kevin O’ Boyle, Benen Kelly approach, which was followed in kind when Tomas Mc Cann nipped in from the left hand side to raise another white flag shortly afterward.
Creggan ended the opening period with a late score after Sam Maguire’s intervention and a foul on the advancing Oran Mc Larnon opened the door for Ruairi Mc Cann to send the resultant award between the posts with Cargin still 0-05 to 0-03 ahead following a tense opening period.
The second half saw the home side reduce the deficit after a couple of minutes as their sharp shooter Ruairi Mc Cann bagged another point from a close range free to reduce the deficit to the minimum.
It was to be Mc Cann who was to ensure his side was to draw abreast of their near neighbours a few minutes later as Martin Johnston from the central zone sent the ever ready wing man away on the left with the deft finish, the home side’s first from play had them back on level terms at 0-05 apiece.
Having been hauled in to a share of the spoils within minutes of the restart Cargin’s greater accuracy in front of the posts saw them pull away again, and by the end of the third quarter they had earned a three point advantage.
A Pat Shivers fetch and deliver opened the way for a smart Jamie Gribbin finish and when Pat Shivers punished an indiscretion on himself to despatch the resultant free directly between the posts from out on the sideline, before fetching a Benen Kelly delivery to add another shortly afterwards.
The Toome men enjoyed an 0-08 to 0-05 advantage as the last quarter progressed, but the home side were far from finished and net minder Oisin Kerr came forward to convert a ;45’ in the 48th minute, and centre back Martin Johnston was quick to follow suit.
The home side had found their mojo as the end approached and a 52nd minute free sent firmly between the posts by Ruairi Mc Cann saw them back on terms and seemingly on a positive trail.
However their failure to hit the target let them down again and Cargin regained their composure, and a superb pick up, and finish to match, saw Tomas Mc Cann split to posts to give his team back the lead. Another Ruairi Mc Cann pointed free ensured parity yet again a few minutes later and a draw looked probable, but Cargin had other ideas however and when another Kevin O’ Boyle advance, and an interchange with Jamie Gribbin, ensured a 58th minute point, the league points seemed on the way to Toome.
Kickham’s were not done yet however and when his side were awarded a late injury time free Ruairi Mc Cann stood strong retaining his composure to despatch a 30 metre free kick between the posts and ensure a share of the spoils at 0-10 apiece.
Overall a fair result between two well matched team. There was an element of sparring about the whole contest, but both showed at times why they will be high on the list of favourites for the big prize when it gets up and running at the business end of the season.
Referee Darren Mc Keown (St Galls)
Oisin Kerr (0-01), Ethan Carey Small, Killian Burke, Aodhan Maguire, Sam Maguire, Martin Johnston (0-01), Ricky Johnston, Kevin Small, Oran Mc Cann, Tiernan Mc Ateer, Paddy Cooey, Ruairi Mc Cann (0-08),Oran Mc Larnon, Dominic Mc Ateer, Matthew Rogers,
John Mc Nabb, Justin Crozier, Cahir Donnelly, Sean Og Quinn, Kevin O’ Boyle (0-01), James Laverty, Benen Kelly, Gerard Mc Cann, Kevin Mc Shane, David Johnston, John Carron, Tomas Mc Cann (0-03), Jamie Gribbin (0-01), Pat Shivers (0-05), Paul Mc Cann