Darren McCann turns away after scoring the game’s opening goal against Creggan last night
O’Neill’s ACFL Division 1
Craggan 2-15 St. Teresa’s 1-06.
Second half goals from Aidan Maguire and Matthew Rodgers saw Creggan collect another brace of points when they overcame the challenge of visitors St. Teresa’s at their Staffordstown Road ground on Friday night.
On paper this looked like a bread and butter fixture for the home side who have only lost one game this season but bottom of the table St. Teresa’s came in search of much needed points and for a time looked like take something from this game.
The visitors were first off the mark when John Mallon pointed them ahead and when Darren McCann followed with a goal soon after the home side looked in a bit of trouble. Kevin Small pulled one back from a free and Sam Maguire followed with another from play to close the gap to two.
Small closed the gap to the minimum with another point from play and normal service appeared to have been restored but John Mallon struck an excellent point from a free to edge the Glen Road men two in front once more.
St. Teresa’s were battling for everything as Paddy Coey missed an opportunity to close the gap for the home side before an excellent fetch and turn by Liam Quinn saw the youngster split the posts to tie the contest for the first time.
That concluded the first half scoring with the sides level at 1-2 to 0-5 following an error ridden opening 30 minutes and St. Teresa’s would have been the happier of the two sides going to the dressing rooms with Matthew Rodgers having replaced the injured Ricki Johnston in the Creggan side.
Kevin Small and John Mallon exchanged early scores as Keelin McCann replaced Dermot McCann in the Creggan side and when Kevin Small missed a simple free and then David McGuckin saw his shot smash of an upright, things didn’t seem to be going their way.
Again St. Teresa’s top forward, John Mallon tied the contest and it still looked anyone’s game but an Aidan Maguire goal and points from McGuckin and Fintan Burke totally changed the reflection of the game.
Suddenly the Kickham’s were playing with more confidence and fluency with Ruairi McCann pulling the strings and the best move of the game saw Liam Quinn finish with an excellent point and David McGuckin followed with another as the St. Teresa’s resistance finally started to subside.
The killer blow arrived soon after as Ruairi McCann produced a defence splitting run before setting up Matthew Rodgers and the youngster finished like a veteran to the back of the net to kill off the visitors challenge.
Time was nearly up at this stage but Creggan continued to attack in waves in the closing minutes with Sam Maguire, David McGuckin and Oistin McAteer firing over late points to put the icing on a good second half performance by Kevin Madden’s side.
This win sees Creggan hold onto second place after league leaders, St. Gall’s came through in a bruising battle at Hannastown. Ruairi McCann was the man behind a lot of the positive moves they produced while David McGuckin, Kevin Small, Liam Quinn and substitute Matty Rodgers were others who impressed on the night.
St. Teresa’s will take some encouragement from their first half performance but will be annoyed at how they faded so badly as the game progressed with John Mallon their best on view on the night and their only real scoring threat.
Photographs: Damien McKee-Picture magic Studios