Raphoe’s second game of their Kirk Cup campaign was at home to Belfast Harlequins on Saturday and the Donegal men secured a confidence boosting win.
Belfast Harlequins 1
The game began at a high tempo with both sides moving the ball around attempting to find a way through. The home side took the lead in the fifteenth minute when John Watt finished off an excellent passing move involving Alan Meehan and striker Gavin Lecky.
Although the Belfast side had created relatively little they drew level within five minutes with a pass to the back post being fired into the net. Five minutes from half time some indiscipline from Harlequins saw then reduced to nine players as two were sin-binned.
Raphoe took advantage and laid siege to the visitor’s goal. Following several excellent saves from veteran keeper Iain Kelly, Raphoe took the lead thanks to an unstoppable shot from Matthew Lecky.
The second half continued much like the first with Raphoe looking relatively comfortable. Fifteen minutes after the restart an excellent shot from Gavin Lecky was saved by the keeper but Johnny Long reacted quickest to fire a first time shot into the roof of the net.
The two goal lead forced Harlequins to attack more and this left spaces at the back for Raphoe to exploit. The game should have been secured at this stage but some good goalkeeping and sloppy finishing meant the score remained unchanged. Harlequins created several opportunities in the last ten minutes of the game but Raphoe keeper Johnny Rankin ensured they had no way back into the game.
Raphoe’s Premier League season begins next week with a trip to Kilkeel.