Ardara manage to hold on for victory against Glenfin

Visitors make a game of it at Pearse Memorial Park

Frank Craig, Ardara PRO


Frank Craig, Ardara PRO


Ardara manage to hold on for victory against Glenfin

Ardara regained second spot in the Division Two standings with a battling home win over Glenfin on Sunday.

Ardara ..........0-14

Glenfin ..........1-9

Cloughaneely had crept in behind leaders Aodh Ruadh on Saturday night after they defeated Killybegs. But with the Pearse Memorial Park men matching that feat the very next day, it's as you were in Donegal football's second tier.

Nearing the death, Ardara looked like they were home and dry with a five-point lead under their belts. However with 0-14 playing 0-9, a late scrambled goal left for the most nervy of finishes. Glenfin won the next kick out and forced a free out of a rattled Ardara.

That allowed them to send one last ball into a crowded mixer and in the ensuing clamber, a desperate Ardara just about managed to clear their lines. With that, the full time whistle signalled.

In what was a very scrappy opening, both sides struggled to implement their respective game-plans with half chances going a begging at either end. Lorcan O'Donnell and Conor Ward both pulled efforts wide inside the opening five minutes.

CJ Molloy was having to work extremely hard to earn a free from the man in the middle. At the third time of asking he was finally awarded one. From the resulting kick, Gareth Concarr opened the scoring a full 10 minutes in.

Glenfin managed to shake the cobwebs moments later when Conor McBride swung over. Great approach play from Lorcan O'Donnell then allowed Brendan Boyle to canter through and again push the hosts ahead.

With Molloy beginning to exert his power and physicality in the full-forward line, it was his excellent fetch and subsequent dispatch that teed up Paul Watters who doubled Ardara's advantage. Molloy again proved to be a direct outlet as he won out in front before swinging over a real beauty from out the park.

Molloy added another moments later as Adrian Brennan's men leapt 0-5 to 0-1 in front. On 18 minutes, a McBride free again made it a three-point game.

Glenfin were then awarded a free close to goal but would have rathered the advantage as Carl McGlynn had found himself through on goal. Play however, was called back and Stephen Carr trimmed matters back to three as the sides exited at the midpoint.

Half-time: Ardara 0-6, Glenfin 0-3 .

Both teams were on the mark early in the second half with McBride (free) and O'Donnell pinging points. Jason Morrow was then allowed to stroll through far too easily as matters were cut to two. With Glenfin now on top, another McBride free left the minimum between the sides.

On 38 minutes Carl McGlynn, with his side's third on the bounce, deservingly squared matters on 0-7 apiece. Ardara desperately needed to intervene. They managed to both stem the tide and regain the lead thanks to a neat O'Donnell effort.

Substitute Brendan McNelis made an almost instant impression when he doubled Ardara's lead approaching the fourth and final quarter. Direct play from the quick heeled O'Donnell again forced Glenfin to draw the foul.

Molloy dispatched from close range and Ardara were now three clear. Former county man Stephen McDermott pulled matters back to within two as the contest entered its final 10 minutes. Brendan Boyle drifted into full-forward and won a fine ball that set up Molloy on the loop to make it 0-11 to 0-8.

Glenfin could have drawn level when a long ball broke kindly to Daniel McGlynn. His stinging drive was beaten away by Cathal Gallagher and, from the counter, Molloy kicked his team four clear. On 57 minutes, another McBride dead ball conversion left Glenfin a single green flag off the pace.

With Boyle beckoning for the ball to be sent in long, McNelis obliged and from the latter's quick hands, another replacement, Kelvin Slowey, eased concerns by fisting over the bar.

Before the end, Boyle seemed like he'd made sure of things with Ardara's 14th effort of the afternoon. But a frantic ending, where Stephen McNamee bundled home from close range threatened to set up a grandstand finish.

One last chance did fall the visitors way. But a lobbed delivery that once again fell in and around the Ardara goalmouth was swept clear by the home rearguard. And it was they that just about held on for the win.

Ardara: Cathal Gallagher; Paddy McGrath, Nicolas Breslin, Danny Walsh; Oisin O'Donnell, John Ross Molloy, Nicolas Maguire; CJ Molloy (0-6,2f), Brendan Boyle (0-2); Ryan Malley, Gareth Concarr (0-1,1f), Paul Watters (0-1); Lorcan O'Donnell (0-2), Conor Classon, Kieran Breslin.

Subs: Declan Gavigan for K Breslin (ht), Tomás Boyle for P Watters (38), Brendan McNelis (0-1) for G Concarr (45), Kelvin Slowey (0-1) for O O'Donnell (55).

Glenfin: Liam O'Mara; Gary Herron, Packie McGrath, Dathai Carr; Gary Dorrian, Daniel McGlynn, Paddy O'Connor; Frank McGlynn, Paddy Costello; Carl McGlynn (0-1), Jason Morrow (0-1), Stephen Carr (0-1,1f); Conor Ward, Ciaran Brady, Conor McBride (0-5,2f).

Subs: Stephen McDermott (0-1) for P McGrath (20), Kevin McGlynn for C Ward (45), Stephen McNamee (1-0) for C McBride.

Referee: Robbie O'Donnell (Naomh Muire).