Bannsiders record useful win at Pairc na nGael

ACFL Division 1

St. Mary’s Aghagallon 3-5  Casement’s Portglenone 1-13

Photographs: Bert Trowlen

Despite another battling performance St. Mary’s Aghagallon came up just short when they entertained Casement’s Portglenone at Pairc Na nGael on Sunday. The Bannsider’s came mighty close on day one before losing by a couple of points to league holders, Kickham’s Creggan before recording their first win against newly promoted Gort na Mona on Wednesday night.

Aghagallon lost by the minimum at Musgrave Park to another promoted side, St. Brigid’s on the opening day and again to Creggan on Wednesday night by five but would have been hoping to take something from the visit of Portglenone.

The visitors have shown some good form this season however and with Paddy Kelly and Ronan Kelly in fine scoring form they led by 0-10 to 2-1 at half time with Gareth Magee and Ruairi McCann breeching the visitors defence to claim first half goals.

After the break Aghagallon battled hard to retrieve something from this game with Pat Brannigan driving them forward from half-back and Jack Lenehan and Eunan Walsh enjoying a bit more success around mid-field.

Walsh did get in for a third Aghagallon goal but this was cancelled out by one from Caolan Tierney at the other end and with Gerard McAleese, Conall Delargy and Ciaran Mckenna looking dangerous going forward it was Casement’s who came away with a two point victory to move onto four points from three starts.

Despite being pointless after three games Aghagallon have shown enough to suggest that a first win is not far away and on the day Luke Mulholland, Adam Mulholland, Pat Brannigan, Jack Lenehan, Ruairi McCann and Gareth Magee were all in fine form.

 Aghagallon: Luke Mulholland, Micky McStravick, Aidan Mulholland,  Paul Mulholland, Pat Brannigan, Mark McKenna,  Jamie Lamont,  Jack Lenehan,  Eunan Walsh, Ciaran Brady,  Adam Loughran, Marc McAfee,  Ruairi Loughran, Ruairi McCann, Gareth Magee

Scorers: Gareth 1-4, Ruairi McCann 1-0, Eunan Walsh 1-0, Adam Loughran 0-1

Portglenone: Ryan O’Neill, Ryan Convery, Johnny Convery, Ronan Delargy, Michael Kelly, Niall Delargy, Caolan Tierney, Fergal O’Kane, Niall Mckeever, Conall Delargy, Ciaran McKenna, Dermot McAleese, Gerard McAleese, Ronan Kelly, Paddy Kelly

Scorers: Caolan Tierney 1-01, paddy Kelly 0-5, Ronan Kelly – 0-4, Conall Delargy – 0-1, Gerard McAleese 0-1, Ciaran McKenna 0-1

Referee: Gerard Dougan (Creggan)

Cargin keep their cool to see off St Brigid’s

Antrim Senior Football League Division One

St Brigid’s 1-10 Cargin 2-11

County champions Cargin had to withstand a late fightback by newly promoted St Brigid’s when the sides met in Sunday’s Division 1 tie at Musgrave Park and it took a an injury time goal from Ciaran Bradley to steady the ship in the end.

Ten minutes from the end it had seemed like plain sailing for the Toome men as they held a six point lead, but St Brigid’s battled back and were within a point of parity when Bradley killed off their hopes with a well taken finish following good approach work by Tómas McCann.

The visitors hit the ground running, against a strangely hesitant St Brigid’s side, and had four points on the board through the McCann brothers Tómas and Michael, Michael Clarke and Ciaran Bradley before the home team raised their first flag through right half forward Ethan Carleton. Paul McCann pointed to restore Cargin’s four point cushion but St Brigid’s hit back with two inspirational long range points from Peter Webb and James Smith to close the gap to just two.

Cargin had moved four clear nearing the end of the first half with points from Tómas and Michael Mccann when John Blaney grabbed a controversial goal for St Brigid’s, the Toome men claiming the ball had already gone wide when Blaney gained possession, but despite their protests the score was entered in Fiontann McCotter’s notebook. Tómas McCann replied within thirty seconds though with a point at the other end and so two points separated the sides at the short whistle.  

St Brigid’s fought back early in the second half to draw level with a point from play by Rory Brolly and one from a free by Ronan McGrady, but they squandered a couple of good opportunities to edge in front and were made to pay as Cargin regained control. Ciaran Clarke edged them back in front and ‘Mossy’ McCann put them two clear before they struck a telling blow as Paul McCann set up his cousin Gerard, who palmed the ball to the St Brigid’s net. When Tómas added a point from a free to put Cargin six clear the only thing in question appeared to be the size of the winning margin, but St Brigid’s showed great resilience to battle their way back into contention. James Smith started the revival with a great point from distance and McGrady cut it back to three with two points in quick succession, one from a 45 and the other from a free.

Cargin were now treading water as Rory Brolly fired over when a goal looked a real possibility before McGrady hit his fourth of the second half to reduce the deficit to the minimum.

The home side’s tails were up as the went in search of the equalising point, but as they pushed forward in pursuit of the score they were hit by a Cargin counter attack which ended with Clarke firing home to give his team a four point win.

ST BRIGID’S: K McGovern; P Finnegan, C King, J Toner; N McDonald, B Sinnott, P King; M Cummings, J Smith 0-2; E Carleton 0-1, R McGrady 0-4 (0-2fs, 0-1 ’45), P Webb 0-1; P Lundy, R Brolly 0-2, J Blaney 1-0.

Subs: H McGuigan for Sinnott (black card replacement 20mins), J Dowling for Carleton (28mins), T McCrudden for Blaney (52mins).

CARGIN: M McGuckin; G McCorley, M Kane, B Laverty; M Keegan, D McKeever, J Laverty; G McCann 1-0, K McShane; E McGrogan, M McCann 0-2 (0-1f), C Bradley 1-1; M Clarke 0-2, P McCann 0-1, T McCann 0-5 (0-3fs).

S Bovill for McGuckin (33mins), J Carron for McGrogan (47mins), P Shivers for Clarke (47mins).

REFEREE: F McCotter (Sarsfield’s).

CJ goal keeps St Gall’s unbeaten

ACFL Division One

Lamh Dhearg 0-06-1-07 St Galls

By Kevin Herron at Hannahstown

St Galls made it three league wins from three with a hard fought 1-07-0-06 victory over Lamh Dhearg at blustery Hannahstown this afternoon.

The visitors trailed 0-03-0-01 with little over ten minutes of the first-half remaining – but kicked five unanswered points to lead 0-06-0-03 at the interval.

Scores were at a premium in the second period and with little over five minutes remaining the vital one fell to St Galls as CJ McGourty rifled to the net to help his side to victory.

The Milltown men opted to play with the breeze on a cold and very blustery afternoon on Hannahstown.

But they fell behind to an early point from Lamh Dhearg and Antrim captain Declan Lynch – CJ McGourty levelled with a tenth minute converted free and at the midway point those were the only two scores of the opening quarter.

Lamh Dhearg regained the lead through Michael Herron, though credit to Conor McIlvenny whose delicate one-handed flick released the half-back who shot over the bar.

Lynch doubled his account within sixty seconds and the hosts were faring well despite playing against the elements.

A superb angled point from CJ McGourty cut the deficit and with ten minutes of the half remaining the sides were level for a second-time through a converted Brendan Bradley free which made it 0-03-0-03.

It took St Galls until the 26th minute to finally press ahead as CJ McGourty converted from the placed ball and doubled it from the same scenario a minute later.

Michael Pollock ensured that St Galls would go in at the break with a 0-06-0-03 lead, thanks to a magnificent point a minute before the interval.

Upon the second-half’s resumption it was St Galls who increased their lead – a patient and probing passing move eventually found its way to Kieran McGourty and the experienced veteran popped the ball over the bar from close range.

It took Lamh Dhearg until the 40th minute to reply through an excellent Ryan Murray point – his sides first in 22 minutes of play.

The hosts made it a two-point game midway through the half as Paddy Cunningham weaved his magic and from a tricky angle sent the ball between the posts to give his side renewed optimism.

The score read 0-07-0-05 with less than ten minutes remaining and with six minutes left it was St Galls who landed the knock-out punch.

Paddy Larkin’s attempt to clear a cross field ball towards his goal looked to have been cut out – however a fortunate bounce saw the Milltown men intercept and spring a goal chance.

Terry O’Neill moved the ball into the path of CJ McGourty and the Galls ace marksman rounded Stephen Tully and shot into the net to move the visitors 1-07-0-05 ahead and surely give them breathing space with five minutes remaining.

Paddy Cunningham converted a free in response – though try as they might, the hosts couldn’t penetrate their way through a stubborn a well organised St Galls backline; marshalled by Chris Kerr.

Three of minutes of injury-time elapsed before referee Eamon McAuley sounded his full-time whistle as St Galls emerged victors to maintain their impressive winning start to the league campaign.

Lamh Dhearg: S Tully, C Nolan, P Larkin, C McIlvenny, D Lynch (0-02), M Herron (0-01), M McGarry, P Fitzsimons, C Hannon, O McKeown, K Quinn, B Rice, P Cunningham (0-02, 0-01f), R Murray (0-01), C Flynn. Subs: D Bellew for C Flynn (47 mins), R Diamond for C Nolan (54 mins), M Finnegan for O McKeown (54 mins).

St Galls: C Kerr, S O’Hagan, A McClean, J McGreevy, J McCaffrey, C McCann, E McCabe, M Pollock (0-01), A Gallagher, B Bradley (0-01f), K McGourty (0-01), C Stinton. T O’Neill, N O’Neill, CJ McGourty (1-04, 0-03f).

Referee: Eamon McAuley (Cargin)

Naomh Eanna bounce back

All County Football League Division 1

Naomh Eanna 2-12 St Teresa’s 0-7

Naomh Eanna bounced back from their midweek defeat by St Gall’s to beat St Teresa’s in Sunday’s league game at Hightown.

A Mickey Morgan goal helped the home side to 1-5 to 0-4 lead the break, three of the points coming from Odhran Eastwood. With wind advantage in the second half Naomh Eanna pushed on and with Conan Lyttle grabbing his team’s second goal they went on to win by eleven points.

NAOMH EANNA: Donal Walsh, Killian Jennings, Michael McNamee, Killian Jennings, Padriag Hamilton, James McAuley, Conor McAuley, Philip Curran, Niall McKeown, Peter Healey, Conan Lyttle, Michael Morgan, Eoin Neagle, Odhran Eastwood.

ST TERESA’S: Aaron Thompson, Conor O’Rawe, Darren McCann, Paul Johnston, Paul McGoldrick, Eoin Connolly, Conor Mallon, Anthony Varndell, Niall McCann, Sean Maguire, John Mallon, Colm McGoldrick, Robert Gallagher, Matthew Mallon, Conor McCann.

Ahoghill open their league account

ACF League Division One (round three)

St Mary’s Ahoghill 1-12 Gort na Mona 1-08

After enduring back to back defeats in their opening two games St Mary’s Ahoghill got their opening points when a strong late quarter saw them come from off the pace to register victory over the visiting Gort na Mona at a cold and bluster Clooney on Sunday afternoon.

Nothing separated the sides in the opening period which saw both sides finding trouble in locating the target and such was underlined in the fact that they only raised a single white flag in the second quarter and at the short whistle they were on level par at 0-05 apiece.

The Clooney men were the more wasteful in front of the posts before an early second period goal by James “Bobby” Magee put them ahead but the visitors were quick to reply in kind and had moved ahead by the 50th minute.

Ahoghill, with the excellent Patrick Graham on top in the middle, and Stephen O’ Connell standing tall at the centre of defence proceeded to dominate the remainder with Donal Graham, unerring from the placed ball raising a further trio of whites to accompany a couple from Eoin Neeson to ensure points secured at 1-12 to 1-08.

A cold blustery afternoon at Clooney saw Ahoghill play hosts to Gort na Mona in the third round of the Division One league.

The home side remained without a positive return from their two opening games to date and although their visitors had opened account with a win over St Teresa’s in round one they had lost to Portglenone in mid-week.

The opening phase saw the visitors away in front as Darren Boyd despatched a 30 metre free between the posts in the opening minute and the home side wasted a couple of opportunities to draw level but were back on terms when Patrick Graham collected in the middle and delivered to Eoin Neeson via PJ O’ Connell to reply in kind.

Encouraged by this success Ahoghill pushed forward again and a brace of points followed from the ever ready corner man Eoin Neeson to ensure a 0-03 to 0-01 advantage.

St Mary’s side looked in control but Gort na Mona were quick to respond with Chris Carson controlling mid-field and the City men moved forward with some authority.

A foul on the advancing Sean Campbell on the right hand side was fully punished when Shane Scullion defied the blustery cross field breeze to fire between the posts in the 12th minute, and when Aiden Mc Donagh completed a well worked approach to add another they were on terms, 0-03 apiece.

The Clooney men regained the lead again in the 17th minute as Patrick Graham rose highest to collect in the central zone and proceed to split the posts and when Danny O’ Neill was grounded on his way forward a couple of minutes later Donal Graham claimed full retribution steering the resultant award between the posts.

The home side had nipped a couple clear but the earlier bad habits returned to haunt Dualtach Johnston’s charges in the latter stages as chances came and went. A couple of brilliant finishes from Gort na Mona’s centre forward Darren Boyd defied the elements and the acuteness of the left sided angles to raise respective white flags to ensure parity on the board at 0-05 apiece as the short whistle sounded.

St. Mary’s started the second half with a bang and with less than two minutes gone they had grabbed a good lead as James Magee pounced to find the net.

Eoin Neeson, who was proving dominant on the left side, had fired into the box and as the Gort na Mona defenders struggled to clear Magee seized the opportunity to forward the loose leather to the back of the net.

The home side’s lead didn’t last long as the bad habits of the opening period were about to revisit and after they had spurned several opportunities to increase their lead the action turned to the other end and would see the visitors assume control.

Sean Campbell had moved in from the right hand side to combine with Conor Browning and Aiden Mc Donagh to hoist a 43rd minute white flag and then big Chris Carson rose highest to claim in the middle and initiate an incisive attack.

Carson was then involved in a promising build up before full forward Paddy McCaffrey’s finish to the net and Gort na Mona had moved into a 1-06 to 1-05 lead.

Donal Graham replied to bring the home side back on terms but when play proceeded to the other end shortly after Paddy Mc Caffrey’s finish which raised another white flag saw the Gorts nip ahead again.

The odds looked in favour of the visitors at this stage but St. Mary’s rose to the challenge and a superb Patrick Graham catch in the middle saw him place Donal Graham who split the posts. Graham then pointed a free following a foul on the former and Ahoghill were back in front.

A 52nd minute Darren Boyd point raised hope within the Gort na Mona ranks but St Mary’s were having none of that and in a storming finish, Donal Graham and Eoin Neeson helped them to a couple of point apiece as Ahoghill crossed the finish line with a 1-12 to 1-08 advantage to claim their first league points.

Ahoghill: Frankie Neeson, Bernard Graham, Sean Mc Mahon, Seamus Mc keever, Eamon Brady, Stephen O’ Connell, Diarmuid Graham, Neil O’ Connell, Patrick Graham (0-01), PJ O’ Connell, Donal Graham (0-06), Ronan Graham, Eoin Neeson (0-04), Danny O’ Neill (0-01), James Magee (1-00)

Subs

Chris Mc Glone for S O’ Connell

Gort na Mona: Nial Mooney, Chris Devlin, Tommy Mc Gouran, Brendan Burns, Padraig Mulvenna, David Mc Erlaine, Chris Carson, Conor Browning, Aiden Mc Donagh (0-01), Darren Boyd (0-04), Sean Campbell (0-01), Pogy Mc Hugh, Paddy Mc Caffrey (1-01), Shane Scullion (0-01)

Subs

Niall Mullanney for S Campbell

Referee V Boyle (Dunloy)