29 Sept 2022

Reports: Inishowen League starts with a bang

Greencastle and Aileach FC played out a cracking opener to the season with Moville Celtic putting in a top-class performance to get the wheels in motion

Jackie Crossan Premier Division   

Aileach FC 3
Greencastle FC 3

With only five minutes on the clock Greencastle took the lead when Nigel Mc Monagle found space on the left side of the box and advanced before sliding the ball under Matthew Gallagher in the home goal. 

Aileach responded well and within five  minutes were level when a fine through ball by Denver Kelly found Caoimhghin McFeeley and he finished superbly high past Conor Brown from the edge of the box. On the half hour Greencastle had a golden opportunity to regain the lead after a Gerry Gill shot from twenty yards was parried by Gallagher and fell to Brennan Moore but his rushed effort just crept wide of the far post.

The away side did gain the lead on 40 minutes when a speculative long ball deceived the Aileach defence and Moore lobbed the out rushing Gallagher from fifteen yards.  Aileach began the second half well and on 50 minutes were unfortunate not to equalise when Caoimhghin McFeeley raced down the right and fired a superb cross for Darren Mc Monagle but the centre forward was unlucky to see his volley come off the outside of the post and wide.


The home side finally got the equaliser their play deserved when good work down the right between McFeeley and Gavin Doherty resulted in McFeeley firing another pin point cross and this time Darren Mc Monagle made no mistake with a side foot volley from eight yards high past Brown.

The home side were on top at this stage and got in front for the first time on 60 minutes after Shane Mc Monagle latched onto a Gavin Doherty through ball and when his first attempted cross was blocked he clipped the ball back for Man of The Match Caoimhghin McFeeley to score a spectacular overhead kick from twelve yards.

With 15 minutes to go in what was a very open game Greencastle got an equaliser  when Nigel Mc Monagle got to the by line and his cross was scrambled home at the back post by Shay McLaughlin. Both sides went all out for a winner and Greencastle came closest with  seven minutes remaining when Nigel Mc Monagle broke clear and Michael McElroy recovered to block his effort which fell back to the striker and he rolled the ball across the goal and the retreating Denver Kelly somehow managed to deny Shay Mc Laughlin what looked like a tap in.

In a game that could have went either way, both sides will be reasonably happy with a point. 

Moville Celtic 10
Culdaff FC 2

In an entertaining first half Moville had an early chance when Aaron McGurk bore down on goal but Zach Conlon saved well. Culdaff responded and took the lead in the 10th minute when a cross from the left was well finished by Bryan McCandless. 

Moville equalised on 21 minutes after Padraig Skelly rose highest to head home a corner. The home side then took the lead minutes later after Jake Morrows cross was slotted home  by Michael McNaught. But within a minute Culdaff got back on terms after Michael Coyle headed home a corner. Moville regained the lead on 35minutes when McNaught curled a superb twenty five yards effort into the top corner giving Conlon no chance.

They increased their lead on the stroke of half time with McGurk converting from close range to leave Moville ahead four two at the break. Culdaffs understrength side were no match for the home side in the second half and  Conor Doherty added the fifth when he raced through onto a McNaught pass to lift the ball over Conlon. Further goals from  Jake Morrow (2), Bradley Callaghan, Ryan McColgan and Dean Shields completed an emphatic win.

Illies Celtic 1
Buncrana Hearts 1

Illies got off to a dream start in this local derby when they opened the scoring in the first minute. A superb Paul Doherty pass found Liam Doherty on the left who squared for Sean McCallion to slot low past  Eoghan O Doherty in the Hearts goal.

The visitors responded  with Pat Loughery denied by a superb save from Johnathan Noone in the Illies goal. At the other end McCallion  cut in from the right hand side and fed Liam Grant but he shot weakly at O’Doherty when well placed. Buncrana got back on terms in the 33rd minute after  Sean Mullan collected a throw-in and rounded four defenders on the edge of the area before blasting to the roof of the net. From there until half time Buncrana had most of the possession but failed to create any clear openings. 

The Hearts dominated the second period and spurned a number of clear chances. On 53minutes Pat Loughery raced through the home defence, rounded Noone and somehow fired wide of a gaping goal. For all their pressure the home side had the clearest chance of the half on 66 minutes after they were awarded a penalty when McCallion was pulled back inside the area.

But Paul Doherty's spot kick was well saved by O Doherty. Spurred by this let off Buncrana poured forward and were unlucky when Mullan found Loughery whose first time effort crashed off the bar. In the final minute a mazy Kieran McDaid run into the area saw the ball break to Sean Mullan who fired over the bar with the visitors claiming in vain for a penalty.

Cockhill Youths 1
Glengad United 2

The visitors, Glengad United, claimed the three points in the highly entertaining encounter with Cockhill Celtic Youth at Celtic Park, Cockhill earlier this afternoon.

The young hoops side started the brighter of the two sides without creating very much in terms of goal chances. Glengad, with the experienced pairing of John Gerard McLaughlin and Matthew Byrne at the back found it difficult at times and on eight minutes a loose back pass from McLaughlin almost resulted in an OG but former Finn Harps keeper Ciaran Gallagher just got back in time divert it wide for a corner to the home side.

Cockhill opened the scoring on seven minutes when a delightful delivery from a corner on the right, by Conor Graham, was powered to the net by the unmarked Bobby Bradely from  eight yards out in the middle of the goal giving Gallagher no chance.

Graham almost doubled the home side's advantage on 22 minutes but his right-footed free from wide on the left rattled the keeper's left hand post and was eventually cleared by Byrne. The visitors levelled matters on 28 minutes when a long ball from defence by Seamus Doherty set Terrance Doherty down the right channel and as he wriggled his way into the box he was allowed to turn and shoot right footed past Eoin Colhoun from a tight angle.

Eoin McLaughlin then had a good run for the home side that saw his shot blocked inside the area by McLaughlin. The home side again started brightly in the second period and had a few half chances that failed to trouble keeper Gallagher. Darragh McDermott had an effort wide on 56 minutes from outside the area when he picked up a short pass from Paul Duffy.  Ten minutes later Conor Graham was off target with another shot from just inside the area on the right.

Glengad went ahead on 78 minutes when a Seamus Doherty free from the halfway line on the left was not cleared and James McKinney shot past Colhoun from the edge of the area in the middle of the goal after he was afforded too much time to get his shot away. Cockhill pushed hard in the final ten minutes and McDermott almost got them level on 85 minutes, but Gallagher got down well to his left to smother the shot.

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