There were wins for Bonagee United, Derry City Reserves, Cochill Celtic and Letterkenny Rovers in the Ulster SeniorLeague on Sunday.
Bonagee got their first win with an impressive 5-0 victory over Fanad United.
Bonagee Utd. 5 0 Fanad Utd.
Cockhill Celtic 2 0 Finn Harps Res.
Drumkeen Utd. 1 2 Letterkenny Rovers
Swilly Rovers 2 3 Derry City Res.
Cockhill Celtic 2
Finn Harps Res. 0
League champions Cockhill Celtic continued their winning start in defence of their title on Sunday against a strong Harps Reserve side. In a very scrappy first half, chances were very few for either side as defences were on top.
The first real big chance for the local side came when a cross from Mark Moran cross found Garbhain Friel unmarked inside the Harps penalty box but the big striker volleyed over the bar. As the half progressed Mark Forker started to dictate for harps from centre midfield and it was he who supplied Matty Henry for a great chance on the half hour but the Greencastle man couldn’t beat Gavin Cullen from close range. At half time the game was 0-0.
A change of formation by Cockhill at half time meant Jazza Mc Laughlin dropping into midfield and as a result Cockhill began to dominate proceedings.
On 55 minutes Mark Moran broke the deadlock following good work by Derek Doherty on the right wing. Doherty supplied an excellent pull back for in rushing Moran to drive past the Harps keeper.
Cockhill continued to press in the second half and got there second on 70 minutes when captain Liam O Donnell toe-poked from close range following a goal mouth scramble.
Cockhill comfortable defended their lead for the remaining 20 minutes. Best for Cockhill were Connor Keddy & Derek Doherty while Mark Forker and Paul Mc Dermott did well for Harps.
Drumkeen Utd. 1
Letterkenny Rovers 2
This was a lively affair at St Patricks Park, Letterkenny scored after two minutes, a Jonathan Minnock free kick caused a bit of a mix up in the Drumkeen defence and the ball fell to Darren McElwaine who scored from six yards.
Rovers probably had the best of the opening 20 minutes without creating any more clear cut chances, Drumkeen got back on level terms after 21minutes, Ronan Coyle got on the end of a through ball and knocked it past the advancing Jason Quinn in the Rovers goal.
There were a few meaty challenges going in and Packie Coll handed out a yellow to John Doherty and later on to Darren McCready. The half ended with a bit of Letterkenny pressure but then just on half time Ronan Coyle was chasing a long ball but keeper Quinn was quickly off his line to clear the danger.
Drumkeen lost Brian McGrory after 20 minutes to be replaced by Gary Patton, at the start of second half Letterkenny’s Anthony Doherty ran through the defence and forced the keeper to push it wide, they then had two corners in a row which were both too long.
Letterkenny got their second and what proved to be the winner on the hour mark as a pass across the Drumkeen defence was intercepted by Stevie O’Donnell who fired home past Conroy.
Drumkeen tried hard to get back on level terms in the last ten minutes but then David Shovlin was shown a straight red card just before the end to quash any remaining hopes for the home side.
Drumkeen will be disappointed with both goals conceded as they were both as a result of errors, overall it was a very tight contest with the Letterkenny men holding firm toward the end with the older heads of Minnock and Lloyd keeping them together. Ref. Packie Coll.
Swilly Rovers 2
Derry City Res. 3
An action packed thriller at Swilly Park before a large crowd which included Derry City boss Roddy Collins. Local man Tony Mc Namee hit the post for Derry on seven minutes.
Derry went ahead on 21 minutes when Ryan Curran produced a delightful chip over a Swilly defender and then volleyed home for a fine goal. Swilly levelled on 36 minutes when Darren Dunworth released Calvin Mooney who produced a great finish from an acute angle.
Swilly went ahead on 40 minutes when Martin Mc Daid unleashed a real piledriver from 30 yards for a wonderful goal. Derry levelled on 56 minutes when former Shamrock Rovers defender David Elberg headed home following a corner.
On 62 minutes the winner arrived when former Finn Harps player Lee Toland had a stunning effort come off the crossbar and quick thinking by Tony Mc Namee saw him head home the rebound. Swilly then lost both Laurence Toland and Brian Pyper to injury with twenty minutes left.
Mooney went close twice near the end for Swilly but Derry were always very dangerous on the break producing some delightful football. A good advertisement for Ulster Senior League Football. Match referee was Stephen Toner.
Swilly Rovers: Gareth Wade, Duncan Patterson, Gareth Colhoun, Martin Boyce, Dylan Hegarty, Damien Friel, Darren Dunworth, Martin Mc Daid, Laurence Toland, Michael Mc Hugh, Calvin Mooney. Subs: Brian Pyper, Ryan Mc Daid (both used) Cathal Diver, David Aina
Derry City Res.: Ciaran Gallagher, Conor Barr, Lee Toland, Calum Mc Laughlin, David Elberg, Raymond Foy, Cormack Burke, Ryan Curran, Conor Harkin, Tony Mc Namee, Mark Timlin. Subs: Conor Mc Dermott, Eoin Barrett, Ronan Curtis, Josh Tracey.
Bonagee Utd. 5
Fanad Utd. 0
The home side claimed their first three points of the season after comprehensively beating a spirited Fanad Utd team yesterday afternoon in Bonagee.
Fanad, under the management of Michael Deeney, fielded a predominately young side and could have been three down before Bonagee actually opened their account. Chances fell the way of Graham Cullen, Frankie McBrearty and Aidan McLaughlin before the hosts opened their account in the 10th minute, when Mark Harkin headed home a Daryl Brown corner.
That lead was doubled in the 21st minute when full back Gareth Breslin unleashed an unstoppable effort from 25 yards into the bottom corner of the net. Four minutes later, it was three nil.
The impressive Mark Harkin powered his way into the Fanad penalty area to cross the ball to Anthony Appiah to side foot home from six yards. Fanad Utd were finding it difficult to break through the opposing defence, with both Daryl McDermott and Darek Frankowski equal to anything that was thrown their way.
Bonagees fourth arrived ten minutes into the second half, when a Frankie McBrearty effort struck the hand of an unlucky Glenn McNulty in the area. Tommy McAree pointed to the spot and Kevin Barr dispatched the resulting penalty. McBrearty did get the goal his performance deserved, when he curled a shot beyond the keeper from the edge of the box in the 65th minute to make it 5-0.
Good performances from both teams. Ref. T. McAree.
Sunday, April 6th
Knockalla Caravans Cup
(E.T. & Penalties if Required)
Letterkenny Rovers v Milford Utd. T. McAree
Drumkeen Utd. v Derry City Res. S. Toner
Swilly Rovers v Glenea Utd. P. Coll
Glengad Utd. v Cockhill Celtic.