Goals the difference as All Saints claim the points at the Bear Pit

ACFL Division 2

Sarsfields 0-7 All Saints 3-3

All Saints travelled to the Bear Pit on Sunday seeking to extend their unbeaten start to season.  Sarsfields are yet to register any points on board from their 2 previous outings with both teams missing key players at this early stage of the season. 

Sarsfields registered seven scores to the visitors six but three of the All Saints scores were goals and in the end that proved to be the difference. All Saints dominated the early exchanges but it took 12 minutes before a white flag was raised with Sarsfields registering the first score of the game. 

In an uninspiring 1st half, both teams struggled to get many scores on the board. All Saints scored the only goal of the first half in a low scoring encounter with youngster Darach Bradley finishing well midway through the first half.  Brendan McDonnell added their only point from a free in a low scoring drab encounter with the half time score 1-1 to 0-3 in favour of the visitors.

The second half continued in a similar pattern to the first with both teams struggling for scores though things improved as the half progressed.

Sarsfields enjoyed good spells of possession at times but struggled to create scoring opportunities to get through a resolute All Saints defence but managed to add four to their first half total.  

All Saints were always able to keep their noses in front however throughout the 2nd half with further scores coming from Benny McDonnell and goals apiece from James McDonnell and substitute Paul O Boyle ensuring them the victory.

Sarsfields have yet to register points on the league table and All Saints continue as one of the early front runners but will need to improve considerably if they are to maintain this position come the business end of season. 

All Saints:

Ryan Stewart

James McDonnell (1.0)

James Gillan

Cal O Brien

Pat Ferris

Sean McVeigh

Ciaran McGarry

Luke O Rawe

Emmet Killough

Matty Downey

Conal Lemon

Darach Bradley (1.0)

Brendan McDonnell (0.3)

Peter McReynolds

Shea O Brien


Eoin Campbell

Ronan McKillop

Paul O Boyle (1.0)

Conor Brennan 

Glenravel ease past St Paul’s

Glenravel 3-15  St Pauls 2-03

By Aodh O’Loan

Not that long ago these two sides would have competed in Antrim Football’s top tier but now both find themselves plying their trade in Division 2, both surely intent on a return to Division 1 status. The early 10:00am throw in certainly didn’t suit the travellers who showed glimpses of exciting football but were eventually well beaten by the home team. 

Glenravel dominated from the throw in and in the opening minute Eamon Ward arrowed a twenty yard pass to Eoin Hynds in front of goal however his clever side footed effort slid past the St Paul’s keeper but was rescued on the line by Niall McStarvick to prevent a certain goal. A few minutes later a great team move by the home team found Eamon Ward again but his nonchalant lob was diverted by Jack McAulfield’s fingertips in the St Pauls net to once again deny a Glenravel goal. Having squandered a few opening chances the home supporters may have been wondering if those missed chances would come back to bite them. David Higgins calmed their nerves with the opening score of the game on eight minutes when he and midfield partner Martin McCarry combined well to put Higgins through and this time he found the net with a rasper. One minute later Eoin Hynds stretched the lead to four points, and just on ten minutes Aodhan Kavangh opened St Paul’s account with a point. From the tenth to fifteenth minute Con Magees really took hold of the game and put over four points without reply in a dominant spell. Callum Higgins, Eoin Hynds, Cathal Hynds and Sean McKay the providers to leave Glenravel ahead 1-05 to 0-01. However, St Pauls were starting to get a lot more possession and with eighteen minutes gone they netted a fine individual goal through Micéal Duffy who rounded several Glenravel defenders before unleashing a pile driver low to the keeper’s left hand. When Liam McLarnon followed up with a pointed free a few minutes later we were down to a three point game 1-05 to 1-02. But the home side regained control of the game for the remainder of the half and would go on to record three more points from the boots of Daniel McQuillan, Eoin Hynds and Callum Higgins to leave six points in it at the break with Con Magees ahead 1-08 to 1-02. 

Glenravel corner back Charlie Henry

Eoin Hynds stretched Glenravel’s lead on resumption but St Paul’s replied with a goal which was almost a carbon copy of their first goal. This time Liam McLarnon rounded a few defenders along the end line before delivering a speculative low cross which Aodhan McKavangh was first to pounce on and volleyed to the Glenravel net reducing the gap to four points. But once again the home team grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and when Eoin Hynds found Callum Higgins in front of goal there was only going to one outcome. That was followed by points from Sean McKay, Eoin Hynds and Callum Higgins to open up a ten point lead and effectively put the game to bed. That cushion allowed Glenravel to empty the bench and how gratifying it must have been for manager Joe Cassidy to see three of the substitutes scoring in the final ten minutes. Daniel McQuillan got his second of the day and when brother Connor netted there was time for family celebrations. Daragh Donaghy and Shea O’Broin rounded off a comprehensive victory for the men in green and white.

No doubt the early start and depleted lineouts had a major effect on this game and if they meet again later in the season it could be a very different affair altogether.

Glenravel: Jude Scullion, Owen McCusker, Sean Higgins, Conor Carey, Charlie Henry, Cathal Hynds (0-01), Daniel McQuillan (0-02), David Higgins (1-00), Martin McCarry, Sean Pol McKenna, Eoin Hynds (0-05, 2f), Eamon Ward, Sean McKay (0-02), Callum Higgins (1-03, 1f), Declan McAuley

Subs Used: Shea O’Broin (0-01) Senan Black, Conor McQuillan, Daragh Donaghy, Aiden McKenna

St Pauls:: Jack McAufield, Aodhan McKavanagh (2-00), Pearse Magee, Micéal Duffy (0-02), Niall Ward, Jonathan Rodgers, James Farrell, Conall Duffy, Barry Burns, Paul O’Hanlon, Coaimhín Duffy, Aiden Finnegan, Niall McStravick, Paul McCullough, Liam McLarnon (0-01)

McCarthy goals pave way for emphatic Aldergrove win

ACFL Division 2

St. James Aldergrove 4-12 St. Teresa’s 0-7

Two first half goals from Ryan McCarthy paved the way for an emphatic Aldergrove victory over visitors St. Teresa’s in Crumlin on Sunday morning. The bustling full-forward was a constant threat to the St. Teresa’s defence and with Seamus McGarry and Declan Gough in fine scoring form it was as good as over at the break.

The visitors did threaten to make a game of it in the early stages and actually led 0-2 to 0-1 after 8 minutes with Paul McGoldrick and John Mallon on target and Conor Browning replying for the Crumlin side.

The home side were thankful to Shane O’Neill who pulled off a good save as St. Teresa’s opened brightly but when McCarthy got on the end of a long delivery form Seamus McGarry to fire to the net the complexion of the game changed dramatically.

Brian McQuillan, Seamus McGarry 0-2, Fearghal Hanna and a couple from Declan Gough saw the home side move clear with McCarthy fielding another pin point McGarry delivery to fire past Odhran O’Neill as St. James moved into a commanding 3-7 to 0-4 half time lead.

Seamus McGarry extended that lead with a point on the restart before Eoin Gault briefly eased the onslaught with an excellent long range point for the Glen Road men but it wasn’t long until the Crumlin side were back on the offensive.

James Trowlan and McGarry relied with points before the home side lost a player to a Red card but it failed to make a significant difference with Declan Gough adding a couple of points in reply to one for Maguire for the visitors.

A goal from county player, Seamus McGarry brought the St. James scoring to a conclusion with John Mallon striking a consolation point for an out of touch St. Teresa’s who opened brightly but were outclassed in the end by a sharp and well organised St. James side.

Aldergrove: 1 Shane O’Neill, 2 Conleith O’Toole, 3 Emmet Irvine, 4 Aiden Irvine, 5 Conor Browning, 6 Christopher McVeigh,7 Geraid Mallon  , 8 Conleith Hendron, 9 Eoin Hamill, 10 Ryan Owens, 11 Fearghal Hanna, 12 Declan Gough, 13 Brian McQuillan, 14 Ryan McCarthy, 15 Seamus McGarry, 16 Oisin McGarry, 18 Stephen Gorman, 20 Michael McCarthy, 17 Seamus Trowlen, 22 Chris Browning

St. Teresa’s: 1 Odhran O’Neill, 2 Aodhan Dugan, 3 Eoin Gault, 4 Eoghan O’Neill, 5 Colm McGoldrick, 6 Darren McCann, 7 Paul Johnston, 8 Luke Cassin, 9 Conor O’Rawe, 10 John Mallon, 11 Sean Maguire, 12 Phil Maguire, 13 Niall McCann, 14 John Erskine, 15 Paul McGoldrick

Referee: Richard Leahy

‘Diesel’ points Gorts to victory

ACFL Division 2

Kickham’s Ardoyne 0-9 Gort na Mona 0-10

A late pointed free from Darron ‘Diesel’ Boyd proved the winning score as Gort na Mona came from behind to snatch the points from an Ardoyne side who gave as good as they got over the hour but just can’t seem to turn good performances into results at present.

For the third game in succession Marty Kane’s Ardoyne have looked like getting something for their efforts but went down by 2 points at Glenavy, a late goal in Ballymena and on Sunday lost with virtually the last kick of the ball at the Crickey.

These Belfast opponents went at it hammer and tong from the throw in in a full blooded encounter that was not for the faint hearted and produced a good hour’s end to end football and a Black Card for both sides.

Aidan McNeill got the home side off the mark when he pointed after 30 seconds with Darron Boyd replying almost immediately for Gort na Mona. A great Kevin Lynch point edged the Kickham’s ahead before Padraig Coumane got forward from defence to tie matters for a second time with only 7 minutes on the clock.

Declan McCormick was getting through a power of work for the home side at mid-field and he fed Aidan McNeill for Ardoyne’s third point of the game after 12 minutes but once again the men from the Mona bye-pass reacted and their own number 9, Darron Boyd brought it all square at the end of the opening quarter.

The second quarter produced more of the same with both sides carrying the ball when in possession and the opposition setting up a defensive wall with Cormac Mullan and Aidan McNeill adding to Ardoyne’s first half total and Darron Boyd 0-2 and Padraig McHugh from a ‘Mark’ on target at the other end to leave the visitors one ahead at the break.

It was more of the same on the restart as the hits went in hard and fast and the visitors extended their lead from a well worked Niall Melaney point in the opening minute before Aidan McNeill and Cormac Mullan came back with points for Ardoyne to level it again by the 8th minute.

It was clear this one was going to go all the way to the wire but Ardoyne’s cause received a setback when Conan McLaughlin was shown Black and they were further punished as Darron Boyd pointed Gort na Mona back ahead as both sides rang the changes.

Gort na Mona then lost a player to a Black card as the level of intensity increased and Cormac Mullan looked to have earned the Kickham’s a point which on the balance of play they probably deserved when he converted a free with three minutes remaining.

The Enright Park men had other ideas however and they launched one last attack and Patrick McCaffrey was fouled as he bore down on goal with Darron ‘Diesel’ Boyd keeping his cool to fire over from the resulting free to make it two wins from two starts for the side who were relegated from division 1 last season.

On this form the Gorts could make a quick return to the top grade and despite a third defeat in succession, Ardoyne have shown enough to date to suggest that they can climb up the table and be a serious contender in the Intermediate championship.

 Ardoyne: 1 Tiernan Hughes, 2 Caelan McCallum, 3 Sean Rooney, 4 Pearce Manley, 5 Conan McLaughlin, 6 Joseph McNeill, 7 Kevin Lynch, 8 Oisin McVicker, 9 Declan McCormick, 10 Eoin Carrigan, 11 Cormac Mullan, 12 Odhran McKee, 13 Michael McGreevey, 14 Ciaran McNeill, 15 Aidan McNeill Subs: Kevin Mclaughlin for Eoin Carrigan, Cathal Keown for Odhran McKee.

Gort Na Mona: 1 Thomas McCaffrey, 2 James Connolly, 3 Gavin McKenna, 4 Padraig Coumane, 5 Sean Campbell, 6 Michael Savage, 7 Padraic Mulvenna, 8 Tiarnan Morton, 9 Darron Boyd, 10 Patrick McCaffrey, 11 Christopher Carson, 12 Dessie McClean, 13 Tarlach Enright, 14 Padraig McHugh, 15 Niall Melaney. Subs: Manus Mullan for Patrick McCaffrey, Caoimhin Magee for James Connolly, Manus McMullan for Padraic Mulvenna, Ciaran Donnelly for Sean Campbell

Referee: Colin Mallon (Aghagallon)

Aldergrove get off the Mark


Dunloy 1-6 Aldergrove 1-12

St. James Aldergrove got their league campaign off to a winning start in an early morning start in Dunloy in dreadful conditions on Sunday past. 

It took a while for this game to come to life given the 10am start and the incessant rain and Dunloy got off to a good start with their full forward scoring a couple of points before Aldergrove finally got into their groove, Seamus McGarry, James Trowlen and Brian McQuillan scoring points to keep it very tight. Aldergrove took the lead into Half time with a fine Seamus McGarry goal. HT 1-4 to 0-5

The weather got worse in the 2nd half making the game difficult for both sides. Aldergrove stretched their lead with points from Seamus McGarry (2) and James Trowlen before the home side were awarded a penalty, which was converted to bring it back to three points. Aldergrove then scored a further three points to make the game safe and took the two points to start the campaign off on a good note.