Two quick goals set up Saints

Homefit Antrim Football League – Division 2

All Saints 3-10 Dunloy 1-10

Two goals inside three minutes midway through the second half were the scores which gave All Saints victory over Dunloy in Wednesday evening’s Division 2 game at Slemish Park. The first was expertly finished by centre half back Paddy McAleer, who after picking up a ball about 30 meters for the Dunloy goal, soloed through and cooly side-footed the ball past the Dunloy goalkeeper. Three minute later Benny McDonnell added another for the Saints, drilling low to the net after good approach work from the right.

Dunloy came back with a goal of their own through a penalty, but those two goals had given the home side a bit of a cushion and they held on for a deserved win.

With centre forward Deaglan Smith in great form Dunloy had looked dangerous in the early stages and had the Cuchullain’s 0-2 to 0-0 clear after seven minutes. It was 12 minutes before All Saints troubled the scoreboard operator, full back James McDonnell foraging forward before firing over. Smith got his third just two minutes after that but the Ballymena boys were starting to find their range and a point from Benny McDonnell cut the gap back to a single point before full forward Shea O’Brien got his team’s opening goal. Chrissy McNaughton hit a fine score for Dunloy on 21 minutes but All Saints finished strongly with three on the trot to lead by 1-6 to 0-4 at half time.

Dunloy started the second half strongly and after good pressure on the All Saints goal Shane Doey pulled a points back, before Chrissy McMahon added another to cut the gap back to a goal. The visitors were applying plenty of pressure, but that was eased on 41 minutes when midfielder Conor Stewart knocked over a point. From the kick out All Saints won possession again and McAleer broke away to score his team’s second goal and just three minutes later the goal tally was up to three when McDonnell hit the target for the Ballymena men.

Dunloy were thrown a lifeline when they were awarded a penalty and Caolan Gillan fired it home, but All Saints still held the upper hand and late points from Benny McDonnell, from a free, and one by Ciaran McGarry from play saw them safely over the line to all but secure their top 6 spot.

ALL SAINTS

1 Niall Shannon

2 Matthew Downey

3 James McDonnell

4 James Gillan

5 Joe Rafferty

6 Paddy McAleer

7 Cormac Lemon

8 Emmet Killough

9 Connor Stewart

10 Ciaran McGarry

11 Brendan McDonnell

12 Shaun O’Callaghan

13 Diarmuid McNally

14 Shea O’Brien

15 Eoin Campbell

Subs:

Rory McVeigh for Diarmuid McNally

Emmet McAllister for Eoin Campbell

Rhys O’Mullan for Shea O’Brien

Charlie Metrustry for Ciaran McGarry

Kelly goal sends Moneyglass on their way to victory

ACFL Division 2

St. James 1-7 Moneyglass 2-10

A superb goal from Sean Kelly after 20 minutes of the first half and another from Dermot McErlain seven minutes from time propelled league leaders Moneyglass to a good victory over St. James Aldergrove in a bad tempered affair in Crumlin last night.

Kelly’s goal was worth the admission money on its own. He broke up an Aldergrove attack deep in his own territory and instigated a counter attack where he combined with several players before taking a final pass from Dermot McErlain to fire to the Aldergrove net.

Conal Prenter got the visitors off the mark with a point in the third minute and the same player took his tally to three by the 17th minute as Moneyglass dominated the opening quarter where the home side could not get a sight of the target.

Patrick McCormick added another in the 20th minute to move St. Ergnat’s 0-4 to 0-0 ahead and Kelly’s goal put the visitors in total control

It finally brought a response from the Crumlin men and Gerald Mallon opened their account with a point in the 22nd minute with Ronan Hanna and Ferghal Hanna following with two more in quick succession before the first half scoring dried up.

Still with only four in it at the break St. James’ would have been expected to find a response in the second half but it was the visitors who took control again at the start of the third quarter. Peter McCormick, Colm Duffin, Seanchann Duffin and Conal Prenter fired over unanswered points by the 36th minute to move St. Ergnat’s eight ahead and even at this early juncture it looked a long way back for a disappointing Aldergrove side.

James Trowlen finally got them on their way again with their first score in 18 minutes when he split the posts from a free but once again Moneyglass were able to respond as the impressive Prenter brought his personal tally to five with points in the 37th and 43d minute.

The home side, who have been going well this year quite simply could not get it together as move after move broke down but Trowlen added another free with 12 minutes remaining to bring their total to five.

A goal great from Ronan Hanna following a turnover in mid-field in the 50th minute briefly threatened an Aldergrove comeback but when Dermot McErlain fired home St. Ergnat’s second goal, three minutes later it was well and truly over.

 Ronan Hanna added a couple of late Aldergrove’s  points and Colm Duffin replied with one for St. Ergnat’s to leave them winners by six points and maintain their unbeaten league record to leave them in pole position at the top of the table.

Strong third quarter paves the way for Glenavy win

ACFL Division 2

St Paul’s 2-8 Glenavy 0-16

Pics Bert Trowlen

St. Joseph’s Glenavy travelled to Shaw’s Road on Wednesday night and recorded a good two point win after an excellent hour of football. The visitors trailed by two at the halfway stage but a strong third quarter where they kicked six unanswered points swung it St. Joseph’s way.

It was the men from Chapel Hill who drew first blood with mid-fielder, Ciaran Loney kicking two fine points and Fiontan O’Boyle adding another to edge them three in front and at this early stage the visitors were moving the ball around with confidence.

It took the ‘Hoops’ a time to settle but Patrick Doyle got them on the scoreboard with a good point and when Liam McKenna punished a mistake in the visitors defence to fire to the net they were ahead for the first time.

That lead was short lived as the visitors replied through the impressive Fergal Henry to draw level but St. Paul’s were coming more and more into the game and Patrick Doyle and Liam McLarnon with a great long range effort saw them hit the front again.

Glenavy replied with Fergal Henry splitting the posts despite being under pressure and Fergus Cunningham marking his introduction with another as play swung from end to end. The visitors then looked to be in for a goal of their own but Jack McAufield made a great save to deny David Nelson.

St. Paul’s finished the half strongly and Mark Munce kicked a good point before Liam McKenna stroked a ‘45’ directly between the uprights to give the home side a two point lead as the half time whistle sounded.

Glenavy came out strongly at the start of the second half with Paddy Gallagher closing the gap to one with an early point before the impressive Ciaran Loney fired over the equaliser as his side dominated the early second half exchanges.

Gallagher moved forward from halfback again for his second point of the game to edge the visitors ahead and Gareth Henry pointed a free but Glenavy had their keeper Gareth Collins to thank as he dived to his left to deny St. Paul’s what looked like a certain goal.

Two more points from Fiontan O’Boyle, who was having a good game on the ’40’ and a massive long range score from Matthew Lawlor had the visitors four in front and looking comfortable before Conal Duffin finally opened St. Paul’s second half account with a point in the 12th minute.

This score seemed to lift the Shaw’s Road side and Gareth Collins again had to be at his best as he saved with an outstretched foot before Conall Finnegan added another point for the home side as they began to gain a bit of momentum again.

Liam McLarnon got in for a good goal as the clock ticked down to leave just one between the sides but the biggest cheer of the night came from the travelling faithful as Malachi Duffin hoisted another long range point over the black spot for the game’s final score to leave the Chapel Hill side victorious by two point.

St. Paul’s: 1 Jack McAufield, 2 Aodhan Kavanagh, 3 Damien Magee, 4 Michael Duffy, 5 don Burns, 6 Cormac O’Hanlon, 7 Padraic Lowe, 8 Conall Finnegan, 9 James Farrell, 10 Paul O’Hanlon, 11 Liam McLarnon, 12 Mark Munce, 13 Conal Duffin, 14 Liam McKenna, 15 Patrick Doyle

Glenavy: 1 Gareth Collins, 2 Darragh Doherty, 3 Liam Henry, 4 Michael Fox, 5 Padraig Fox, 6 Matthew Lawlor, 7 Paddy Gallagher, 8 Michael Johnston, 9 Ciaran Loney, 10 Ryan Phillips, 11 Fiontan O’Boyle, 12 Ruairi Forester, 13 Niall McCann, 14 David Nelson, 15 Fergal Henry

Rossa climb to fifth

Homefit Antrim Football League Division One

St Brigid’s 2-9 O’Donovan Rossa 1-17

An Eoghan McMenamin goal in the 56th minute swung this game at Musgrave Park decisively in favour of visitors Rossa and sent them on their way to a win over St. Brigid’s on Wednesday night ans saw Rossa climb to 5th place in the league.

Rossa looked to be in the driving seat when they led their hosts by six at the break but St. Brigid’s came back strongly to dominate the third quarter to move two points clear and appeared to be heading for victory.

McMenamin’s goal gave the momentum back to visitors Rossa who finished very much in the ascendancy to win by five points.

However, Rossa found a way and when McMenamin rattled the net, they grabbed back momentum at the perfect time to finish strong and win by five.

County panellist Dominic McMenamin was enjoying a rare start for his club side and served notice that he is ready for an opportunity at County level when he finished top scorer for the Shaw’s Road side with 0-9. Six of his total came from frees but his contribution from play was significant as he fired over three superb efforts.

St. Brigid’s defended in numbers from the start as Rossa owned possession in the early stages but it took them a little while to find a way through a tight home defence until McEnhill found enough space to get onto his right and curl over after four minutes.

Darren Grego doubled the Rossa lead when put through, but his fierce drive sailed over when he might have had a goal. This brought a quick reaction from the home side and they made an immediate reply with Conor McAleer getting them off the mark before Finnegan burst through to score and Jack Dowling followed with a long range effort to see them in front after 12 minutes.

Rossa responded as they dominated the breaks and looked much more sharp in attack, hitting five points in as many minutes as McEnhill scored two identical points out on the right before converting a free, while younger brother Michael got in on the act and Colm Fleming nailed a free.

Conor McAleer hit back with a point for St Brigid’s, but a pair of McEnhill frees swung it decisively back in favour of the visitors going into the break with Sean Pat Donnelly played a first time ground shot across goal and Dara Rocks looked certain to net but his shot sailed over to leave Rossa 0-10 to 0-4 up ahead at the break.

St. Brigid’s looked a much more focused side on the restart oracle as they began to press up on the Rossa defence to stop them building from the back as they had been able to do with ease in the opening period.

This approach began to pay dividends as they won possession in the third minute and a smart approach down the left saw them open up the Rossa defence and Ronan Boyle squared for Paul Bradley to climb and palm the ball to the net.

Michael McEnhill responded with a point for Rossa straight away, but it was clear the momentum had shifted as St Brigid’s had gained the initiative with Conor McAleer kicking a free and another excellent move involving Niall Lundy and Bradley saw James Smith one-on-one and his finish superbly to the net in the 40th minute.

McAleer pointed a free to give the home side the lead with Colm Fleming levelling with a point from Rossa in the 50th minute but St Brigid’s were in the ascendancy and Michael Cummings finishing a well-worked with a point and Patrick Finnegan added another from a difficult angle on the right.

It was visitors Rossa who finished strongly however and Fleming converted a free to reduce the gap to the minimum and from the resultant kick-out Adam Devlin was first to the broken ball. He found Diarmuid Rogan who in turn fed McEnhill and with McMenamin taking the layoff, he burst in from the right and buried the ball in the St. Brigid’s net

McEnhill added a couple of frees as Rossa pressed home their advantage while Ronan Boyle replied with a point in stoppage time to leave a goal in it. The final scores fell they way of the visitors as Jack Morris firing over and McEnhill curling over a late free for his ninth point of the evening to seal a big two points for Rossa that moves them up to fifth place.

ST BRIGID’S: D Heery; R Boyle (0-1), J Toner, D Foster; P King, C King, F Meenagh; M Cummings (0-1), J Dowling (0-1); C McAleer (0-4, 3 frees), P Finnegan (0-2), P Bradley (1-0); J Finnegan, J Smith (1-0), N Lundy.
Subs: S Campbell for D Foster (44), J Morgan for P King (49), M Lynch for P Bradley (59).

ROSSA: M Byrne; S Shannon, C Orchin, P Moyes; J Morris (0-1), C McGuinness, N Crossan; D Grego (0-1), C McGettigan; C Fleming (0-3, all frees), D McEnhill (0-9, 6 frees), M Mallon; SP Donnelly, D Rocks (0-1), M McEnhill (0-2).
Subs: E McMenamin (1-0) for D Rocks (40), A Devlin for M McEnhill (46), D Rogan for D Grego (55)

REFEREE: Conal Roberts (St John’s)

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Returning county men help Saints cause

ACFL Division 2

All Saints 3-9 Rasharkin 1-5

Pics: Mark Hasson

All Saints welcomed county players Paddy McAleer and Conor Stewart back into their starting lineout while Peter McNicholl made his first start of the season and it coincided with a much improved performance by the Ballymena side as they defeated St. Mary’s Rasharkin by 10 points at Slemish Park.

They certainly didn’t get it all their own way in the opening half but goals from Oisin Connolly and Eoin Campbell within a minute of each other at the start of the second quarter propelled them to a 2-3 to 1-3 half time lead.

The Rasharkin goal came from Ryan Lynch after 25 minutes and brought the visitors right back into contention with a just a goal separating the sides as the half time whistle sounded. It was the home side who found another gear on the restart however as they hit six second half points with the visitors only able to add two to their total and when Conor Stewart fired home a goal in the 30th minute it was already sewn up.

Eoin Campbell opened the scoring for All Saints with a point in the 3d minute but Rasharkin responded with points from Ryan Lynch and Eamon McNeill to edge ahead at the end of a low scoring opening quarter.

Matters swung dramatically in favour of the home side however with Conor Stewart and Eoin Campbell adding goals in the 16th minute and Stewart followed with a point before Ryan Lynch closed the gap with a goal for the visitors with 25 minutes gone.

Rasharkin keeper, Tiernan O’Boyle stepped up to convert a ‘45’ and close the gap to two with two minutes remaining to the break with Paddy McAleer concluding the first half scoring with a point for the Slemish Park side.

The game looked set for a tight second half as Brendan McDonnell from a free and Ryan Lynch from a similar award exchanged early scores but it was ‘Baker’ Bradley’s side who stepped up their game to another level.

Two more pointed frees from Brendan McDonnell and another from play by Rory McVeigh saw them move six clear by the 18th minute as the visitors struggled to put their game together and it was 23 minutes before Ryan Lynch scored their second point from another free.

Indeed it was to prove to be Rasharkin last score of the game as the home side finished with a flourish with Brendan McDonnell pointing his fourth free of the half and Conor Stewart showing just how much he has been missed this year as he pointed in the 30th minute and followed with a goal, 30 seconds later to conclude the scoring.

1 Niall Shannon, 2 Matthew Downey, 3 James McDonnell 4 James Gillan, 5 Joe Rafferty, 6 Peter McNicholl, 7 Paddy McAleer, 8 Emmet Killough, 9 Conor Stewart, 10 Shaun O’Callaghan, 11 Oisin Connolly, 12 Eoin Campbell, 13 Brendan McDonnell, 14 Shea O’Brien, 15 Diarmuid McNally,

Subs: Kavan Keenan on for Oisin Connolly Rory mcveigh on for diarmuid mcnally Cormac Lemon on for Eoin Campbell

Rasharkin: 1 – Tiernan O’Boyle, 2 – Daniel Doherty, 3 – Emmet McFerran, 4 – Pearse Kelly, 5 – Colm Kennedy,  6 – Seamus Ellis, 7 – Conor Doherty, 8 – Thomas McMullan, 9-

, 9 – Jack Quinn, 10 – Thomas Doherty, 11 – Eammon McNeill, 12 – Conor Hasson, 13 – Ruairi OBoyle, 14 – Ryan Lynch, 15 – Andrew Hasson.

SUBS:

off: Andrew Hasson  on: Gerard O’Hagan

off: Thomas McMullan  on: Conor Higgins

off: Thomas Doherty  on: Odhran McGarrell