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Championship round-up September 16

Match reports from Championship team:



Crumlin United 2 Bangor 5

A second-half five-goal blitz saw Championship One side Bangor through to the fourth round of the Steel and Sons Cup as the Seasiders came back from a two goal half-time deficit at Mill Road.

With just five minutes on the watch, Ian Brownless showed a clean pair of heels to a slack Bangor defence as the impressive home striker ran past four players to neatly tuck a low 10-yard shot inside the right post.

Seven minutes later, home midfielder Fergal Burke found Brownless 25 yards from the Bangor goal, and again the giant forward gave Bangor keeper Darren Gibbons no chance from close range.

With Crumlin pulling 11 men back behind the ball, the visitors were frustrated for the following 33 minutes, coming closest a minute into added time, when a three man move saw midfielder Barry Walsh and defender Marc Whitford combine to set up Dom Melly, but home keeper Marc McKeown reacted lightning fast to block the playmaker's 20-yard drive.

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Bangor's breakthrough came on the hour when left back Marc Whitford got his head to a long cross from fellow back Andy Long to give McKeown no chance at the far post.

Seven minutes later, a four-man move down the left ended with Melly slamming from six yards into the top right corner. With Bangor now laying siege to the home goal, it was veteran Andy Morrow who put the visitors in front on 80 minutes, when he pounced on a loose ball six yards out to give the keeper no chance.

Six minutes later, Morrow poached his second when he scrambled the ball over the line, and three minutes into added time, Andy Long was the supplier for Morrow to slide the ball in from a couple of yards out with the keeper unable to prevent the ball crossing his line.


Lisburn Distillery 3 Dundela 6

Steel and Sons Cup action took centre-stage at New Grosvenor Stadium on Saturday afternoon with the tie of the round living up to its billing.

The first strike in this goal-fest arrived on 18 minutes when ex-Distillery player Michael Halliday took advantage of a defensive error to head past McBride in the Whites goal, and it was soon to be 2-0 for the Duns as speedy winger Daniel Burns beat the Whites defence and found himself one-on-one with McBride, before playing a square ball to Carl McCombe who lashed the ball into an empty net past the stranded keeper.

The Whites were reeling in disbelief, having created numerous chances for themselves throughout the half but were unable to convert any of them due to a combination of some poor finishing and some superb keeping by McKay.

The second half had only just kicked off when the visitors went three ahead as McCombe got his double after a woeful back pass found him one-on-one and he calmly slotted it past McBride.

Three soon became four as Kyle Owens met a floated cross to head into the roof of the net.

It was then a five-star performance from the visitors as great work by the constantly tricky Burns saw him swivel in the box before placing his effort in the back of the Distillery net.

The Whites looked completely shell shocked at this stage, however they did reduce the deficit a little following a great move by Chris Kingsberry.

His deflected effort pulled one back and then a little chink of hope came for the hosts as Ally Wilson met a David Wright lob to slide it into an empty Dundela net. The glimmer of hope then became much bigger as Wilson scored his second and the Whites third as he smashed one in at the back post.

It wasn't to be a fairytale comeback, however, as following another defensive mix-up at the back Carl McCombe sealed his hat-trick and Dundela’s place in the next round, this following the sending off of Kyle Cherry for a second bookable offence.


PSNI 1  Kilmore Rec 2

Kilmore Rec thoroughly deserved their 2-1 win over a poor police team in a cup tie played under near perfect conditions at Newforge.

From the opening minutes it was obvious that the visitors’ front-line would cause the police defence problems.

Kilmore took the lead when Telford beat Wilson with a great 20-yard drive after excellent work down the right by Carl Lewis 15 minutes into the first half.

With Police centre half McCrory having to leave the field with a leg injury the reliable Brennan was called into action to play along side Anderson. The remainder of the first half was dominated by Kilmore until the 45th minute when Arthur equalised with a 20-yard free-kick that seemed to deceive McKenna in the Kilmore goals.

The visitors continued to dominate in the second period and deservedly took the lead, when Telford was allowed to turn with the ball in the penalty box and beat Wilson form ten yards.

For the PSNI, Berry caught the eye in midfield while Telford was best for Kimore.


Queen's University 0 UUJ 1

This was a tight game of much commitment, little good football and just two decent chances despite the excellent playing surface.

Queen's best chance came in the second minute when Brendan Agnew headed over the bar from three yards out.

Jordanstown's winner came seven minutes into the second half when Lawrence Lyons was in the right place to head past keeper Brown from Tim McCann's left wing cross. Queen's pressed in the last 15 minutes and made a few half chances but UUJ held out fairly easily for the win.




Banbridge Town 0 Annagh United 2

Two goals from the experienced Shea Campbell were enough to see Banbridge Town exit this season's Bob Radcliffe Cup at the hands of a strong Annagh United side who exacted revenge for a league defeat at the hands of Town last month at Crystal Park.

It was always envisaged that Town's lightweight squad (in numbers and experience) would struggle this season should they suffer injuries or non-availability to their more seasoned players.

Last Saturday was such an occasion with Paul Walsh, Chris McGrath and Conor Downey all missing. Indeed in the case of Chris McGrath, the news could not be much worse as the key midfielder will be absent for around six weeks after suffering a freak knee injury in a friendly fixture last Tuesday night.

However it is not all bad news, as for long periods on Saturday, they matched their opponents all over the park, but lacked a cutting edge up front and failed to take their chances when they came along. Annagh opened brightly and Harpur shot over from a 30-yard free after only two minutes. A lively Mark Teggart beat two defenders before testing keeper Wright with a strong drive which the latter held at the second attempt.

It was the visitors who took a 16th minute lead, when left winger Gardiner rounded Michael Ferguson before sending a pinpoint cross onto the head of Shea Campbell, and he made no mistake from close range.

Mark Teggart had a chance to equalise for Town soon after but delayed after racing on to a long through ball from Adam Pedlow.

Banbridge continued to push forward at every opportunity and on the half hour missed a golden opportunity when Teggart whipped a cross over only to see the incoming Steven O'Neill head wide of a gaping goal.

These were real chances that would come back to haunt Town. At the other end, Campbell curled a shot wide on 35 minutes before Mark Teggart (man-of-the-match for Town) forced a fine save from Wright after Adam Pedlow had supplied the perfect pass.

The ever-dangerous Campbell almost added to Annagh's lead after 42 minutes but the alert Stephen Cairnduff made a great blocking save.

Town's last chance to level matters before the interval was squandered when Pedlow miskicked in front of goal after Teggart had created the opening with some fine footwork. Banbridge came out after half time with all guns blazing and Adam Pedlow lobbed over after 51 minutes.

However, they had Stephen Cairnduff to thank for keeping them in the game when he produced a breathtaking save to prevent a 25-yard piledriver from Brown ending up in the net after 60 minutes.

Eight minutes later, Damian McParland made a great run from the left back position to cross for Mark Teggart who headed into the grateful Wright's arms.

Steven O'Neill forced an 80th minute corner which was safely held by the confident Wright, while at the other end, Cairnduff made another good stop from Annagh substitute Harrison after a fine Campbell pass had found him unmarked in a great position.

As time ran out, Banbridge were unlucky to have penalty claims rejected when it clearly appeared that an Annagh defender handled in the box as he attempted a clearance.

To add to Town's woes, Campbell put the nail into their coffin after 95 minutes, when he tapped in at the far post to secure a quarter-final spot for Annagh (with Town defenders claiming he was in an offside position).

Banbridge get an opportunity next Saturday to get back to winning ways when they return to league action with a visit to Tobermore United who came down from Championship One last season. Kick-off is 3pm.

It is hoped that Paul Walsh and Conor Downey will return to the panel and that a victory will keep them top of the league.


Armagh City 5  Lurgan Celtic 1

Armagh City eased into the fourth round of the Bob Radcliffe Cup after a decisive 5-1 victory over Lurgan Celtic.

The Holm Park outfit took the lead on five minutes, when Shea McGerrigan blasted home after good work on the right by Stephen Murray.

City made it 2-0 on 15 minutes, when Sean Kelly's shot from 10-yards gave Celtic keeper Ciaran Fox no chance. Just before the break Armagh added a third, when captain Liam Cullen fired home a curling 20-yard effort into the top corner of the net.

On 55 minutes, the match was over as a contest when Murray scored with a follow-up after an initial header from Matthew Hynds was well saved by the overworked Fox. Seven minutes later an angled shot from Kevin Keegan could only be parried into his own net by the Celtic stopper.

With 15 minutes remaining, Lurgan did manage to grab back a consolation goal when Declan Heaney took advantage of an Armagh defensive mix-up.




Limavady United 2  Roe Rovers 1

Limavady United got their defence of the Craig Memorial Cup off to a winning start on Friday night and, in doing so, gained their first victory of the season.

But, although excellent in spells, United will feel that they made hard work of seeing off their junior opposition, and they were still relatively poor in their finishing.

United started the brighter, and Morrison spurned a great chance after nine minutes when he met Logue's hard and low cross, but managed to miss the target from point-blank range.

Then Friel let fly with a dipping volley that O'Brien did well to tip over.

Next to try his luck was Paul Brown, who produced a towering header in the six-yard box, but the keeper did really well to get down and stick a hand out to turn the ball round the corner. Playing in an attacking 4-4-3 formation, United were breaking forward repeatedly but Rovers stood firm.

The visitors' first chance came on 22 minutes, when a long range effort from a cleared corner was put wide. United went in front on 25 minutes, and yet again this season, the crowd saw an own goal, but this time, the home side had the benefit.

The goal was all down to Morrison's persistence, as he went on a powerful run from the left, cut into the box, and crossed along the goal line, where the unfortunate O'Doherty turned the ball into his own net.

This was no more than the Championship side deserved, and they almost doubled their lead a minute later when Paul Brown did well to tee-up McFadden, but the midfielder blazed his effort wide. Next to go close was McGregor, who connected with Morrison's perceptive pass to unleash a thunderous volley that O'Brien fisted over.

Four minutes later, Harkin joined the attack and sent a low shot wide from distance. But although they were playing neat, attractive football, the goals were not coming.

And on 38 minutes, they missed another glorious chance, when a cross cut through Rovers' defence and just missed Friel but found Paul Brown lurking unmarked on the post, but amazingly he put the ball just wide.

Two minutes later, O'Brien foiled the burly striker, and as the half ended, Rovers had a rare chance when a deep cross beat Conor Brown but the ball was put over the bar.

The second  half was three minutes old when Mullan cut in from the right flank and worked the ball to Harkin, who fired low into the bottom corner from the edge of the box. This ought to have settled nerves, but instead, Rovers rallied while United sat back, albeit without any moments of great anxiety.

On the hour, McGonigle had a good header and Conor Brown made a smart save. However, from the resulting corner, the ball reached Wray, who crossed to the unmarked Thomas Mullan who had time to head home, and for a brief period, the visitors saw the chance for an upset.

Paul Brown had an early chance to restore the advantage two minutes later, but the chance went wide.

In the last ten minutes, United should have killed off the game, as first McCallion had a fine shot pushed wide by O'Brien, and then Friel had a couple of chances well blocked by the keeper.

So United go into the next round against Magherafelt, but before then have a crucial league meeting with fellow strugglers Ballyclare.


Moyola Park 1 Tobermore United 0

A cleverly-threaded through ball from Chris Dowie, which Sean McConnell cracked past Tobermore United keeper Paul Wells minutes before the half time whistle, was sufficient to seal the win for Moyola Park in this South Derry derby played in front of a sizable crowd at Mill Meadow.

Sean Henaghen tested his former colleague Marty Farniok the Moyola Park keeper, who signed for the Castledawson side in the summer transfer window, from 25 yards in the 19th minute. Dowie in turn tested Wells from 25 yards, who saved at the expense of a corner.

Just before the interval, a Gareth Stewart corner was headed just wide of the United goal by Sean McCabe.

Gareth McLaughlin had a golden opportunity to put Tobermore United on level terms early in the second half, his effort being well blocked by Farniok.

Minutes later, Steven Long hit the Moyola Park side-netting.

Following an infringement by Mark Waddell, for which he was yellow carded, David McClements hit the resultant free kick wide of Farniok's left hand upright with just over 30 minutes left on the clock.

Michael Walsh came closest to scoring a second goal in the game when he lobbed Wells from near the halfway line only to see the ball come back off the Tobermore crossbar.


Portstewart 6 Mountjoy United Reserves 0

Portstewart cruised through to the second round with this comfortable win.

The first half was scrappy until the 32nd minute when James Peden scored with a fierce left foot free kick.

Owen Moody made it 2-0 just before half time with an excellent volley.

On the hour, Ian Todd headed in Ricky Dunlop's long throw at the near post, and Dunlop made it four latching onto a through-ball in the 67th minute.

Lee Forgrave raided down the right in the 75th minute and his cross ended in the back of the net off a Mountjoy defender.

Substitute McKittrick got his first goal for the Ports when he outstripped the Mountjoy defence and slipped the ball past the keeper to make it six.

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