Down Area Winter Football League round-up, March 15
With Moat Park Rangers being in cup action, both Brentwood and Greenwell Star took the opportunity to reduce the points deficit at the top of the Premiership table.
Now lying only four points behind the Dundonald men following a hard fought 3-2 win over Comber Young Men, Gary Barclay will be looking forward to next weekend when the two sides clash at Londonderry Park.
Fresh from a 16-1 win over bottom side Clandeboye YM, Lee Cathcart’s Greenwell Star will be hoping that James Dickson’s men drop points in any form within the top of the table fixture, leaving his side with a clear sight of retaining their title.
Alan Harvey’s 3 Bangor OB’s will not be pushing their panic buttons just yet, but their 5-4 defeat at the hands of Willowfield Parish will be a disappointment as they aim to preserve their Premiership position with only four games of the season left.
In the remaining fixture Paul Craig’s 8 OB’s bounced back from last week’s defeat by putting 7 past a Castlereagh Colts side who have competed well since their return to the top division.
Steven McKeown will no doubt have what happened Newcastle F.C. in the 1995-6 run-in buried somewhere in the back of his mind, but on current form it looks like there is little chance his North Down side will blow the ten point lead they have built up at the summit of Division 1.
Indeed their mid-season wobble appears to have come to an end with their 4-1 win over Queens Graduate III’s seeing them almost guaranteed a Premiership position next season.
Bangor Swifts III’s promotion hopes took a severe dent following their 3-2 defeat at the hands of Pete Hamilton’s Ballygowan, while Comber Rec III’s moved into second spot with a convincing win over Ballywalter Rec III’s
Andy Rendall’s Newtown Forest’s recent rich run of form came to an end with a 1-1 draw at the hands of Bryansburn Rangers III’s, while Neale Watterson’s Agape gave 43 OB’s six of the best.
Honours were even between Abbey Villa III’s and Bangor Rangers III’s, while Stewart Beattie’s Ards Rangers III’s continued to show progress with a 3-2 win over 82.
At the bottom of Division 2a, 3 Bangor OB II’s took an important three points off Corrymeela II’s, running out 5-2 winners, while it continues to be a successful return to the DAWFL for Gerry McCullough-Noble, with his Brentwood II winning 6-3 against Vision Athletic II’s.
In Division 2b, Ballygowan II’s defeated 8 OB II’s 2-1, Stranmillis 37 OB II’s hit 6 against Agape II’s and Bangor Rangers IV’s won by a single goal against Castlereagh Colts II’s.
Peter McNally could not hide his disappointment as his Ravenhill YM went out of the Sittlington Cup cruelly on penalties against Moat Park Rangers, with James Dickson’s men now to face Comber Young Men in the quarter finals.
Andrew Bassett’s Comber Star became the second team from the town to reach the semi-finals of that competition following their 4-0 win over Bangor YM III’s.
James McDade’s Greenwell Star II’s completed the semi-final line up for the Merven Bassett Cup with their 4-0 win over Newtown Forest II’s. The Ards men now face Bryansburn Rangers IV’s for a place in the final.
In the Tommy Murphy Memorial Shield, Ravenhill YM II’s won 4-2 against 43 OB II’s, while the remaining ties for home sides Comber Star II’s, Comber YM II’s and Willowfield Parish II’s all finished in draws.
Belfast Telegraph Digital