Magherafelt Reds 6
WEDNESDAY night saw the Reds travel to local rivals Upperlands for what turned out to be an evening of twists and thrills.
The home side with a large crowd of supporters on the side line were first on the score sheet when they caught the Reds defence sleeping and nipped in to take the lead.
The visitors gathered themselves and had drawn level within 5 minutes of the opener via some nice play from captain Stephen Devlin to Mark Montague.
The Reds continued pushing forward and took the lead through another Montague goal. The home side again caught the Reds defence and equalised taking the score to two goals each. Upperlands then took the lead when their attacker received a good ball and struck a lovely shot round the oncoming McManus to go ahead for the second time in the game giving the home side a 3-2 lead.
Disaster struck when Upperlands scored their fourth goal level the Magherafelt men trailing 4-2.
The Reds came back into the game and were soon awarded a penalty only to see it being struck off the post and ushered away to safety by the Upperalands defence.
With eight minutes remaining and the game looking out of reach the Magherafelt men showed their quality and with some great passing play Colin Overend finished well to take back the deficit to 4 - 3. Two minutes later saw Jasy Martin bury the ball in the Upperlands goal to level the scores again at 4 each with 4 minutes remaining.
Magherafelt’s recent signing Bazza Kelly who had been introduced to the game in the second half showed his skills on the ball to give the visitors a deserved 5th goal and to silence the home support for the first time in the game.
With only seconds remaining the Reds talismanic Ryan Sinclair made a run to the 18 yard box and with a Lampardesque lob floated the ball over the Upperlands keeper to give the Reds a 6-4 victory and complete their double over their south Londonderry neighbours this season.
Great resilience was shown by the Magherafelt men to fight back and win a game where they saw their many earlier attempts go anywhere but the back of the net.
Team: McManus, S. Brady, B. Martin, Jordan, McDonald, Overend, Devlin, Sinclair, Montague, J. Martin, McGuire. Subs: T. Brady, R. Taylor, Kelly, Campbell, P. Taylor, O’Neill.
The Reds next game is away to Portrush on Saturday, April 28, at Parker Avenue, 2pm kick off.