Draperstown Celtic round-up

Draperstown Celtic Firsts put Tuesday nights disappointment behind them to battle back and earn a point against top of the table Garvagh.

Tuesday, 16th November 2021, 10:21 am

With a few disruptions to the squad, manager Glass was forced into a few changes which seen Ryan Scullion return between the sticks, the McGlade brothers on both flanks which allowed McGrogan to play centrally alongside McGovern.

The game started in lively fashion with both sides comfortable in possession but failing to capitalise in the final third of the pitch.

DC did break the deadlock when some fantastic play down the right hand side from Irwin, D. McGlade and McGuigan saw D McGlade square a ball across the Garvagh goalmouth for his older brother Niall to confidently slot home.

From there, the visitors should have been able to push on, however, the home side proved why they’re at the top of the table in the space of 10 minutes. Dangerman Dempsey found the back of the net, the first from close range and the second a tidy finish from just inside the box. After a dangerous Higgins corner and goalmouth scramble, Irwin was very unlucky to see his improvised flick toward goal go narrowly wide.

Having largely controlled the opening 30 minutes yet see his side concede two very avoidable goals, Glass cut a frustrated figure on the sideline. The half finished 2-1 to the home side.

After a few strong words at half time, the visitors took to the pitch with the aim of getting themselves back into the game. However, it was the home side who started the half brighter and but for some last ditch defending could’ve widened their lead.

On the hour mark, DC made a change that saw O’Kane enter the game and a few positional changes that aimed to get the likes of McGuigan and McGrogan on the ball. Hard work from O’Kane got DC their equaliser. Putting the Garvagh central midfielders under pressure, O’Kane managed to deflect the ball into McGovern’s path who took on the home defence, ignored the support arriving to his right and at the second time of asking slotted the ball into the corner of the net giving the keeper no chance.

At 2-2, the game was finely poised with both sides making attacking substitutions looking to secure all three points. As the game progressed, it was the visitors who had the best opportunities to grab the victory with McGovern inches wide with a header from McGlade’s super delivery.

Moments later, substitute Kelly was played through on goal but his effort outside of his right foot travelled just past the far post. On the break, Garvagh too had chances but Scullion was assured when called into action and had plenty of protection in front of him with the defence fantastically led by Irwin.

The game finished 2-2 and whilst DC probably feel they did enough to win the game, it could turn out to be a valuable point gained come the end of the season.

Reserves 4 – 1 Glenshane Athletic

DC reserves were at home to Glenshane Athletic for the third time this year in the Chronicle Cup.

Glenshane started strongly and dominated the first 20 minutes. They had several chances before going ahead with a strong header from a corner.

DC changed shape shortly after and began to grow into the game, however, it took several excellent saves from keeper Conor Gallagher to keep them in it. DC created a few chances and were unlucky not to equalise with Flanagan, Rafferty and Connor McCann coming close.

Shortly before half time Jack Heron got up high and strongly converted Enda McKee’s corner. DC went in level despite being the weaker team.

As soon as the second half started DC upped the tempo and began to dominate the game. Noel Rafferty took advantage of an uncleared corner to put DC ahead.

With Hegarty, Heron, McSorley and Burke strong at the back DC didn’t give Glenshane many chances in the second half, a rare corner was cleared by Conor McCann and the irrepressible Rafferty pounced on a mistake, ran the ball from halfway and chipped the keeper for an excellent second.

Paul McSorley was introduced and worked strongly with McKillion in the middle of the park. Michael O’Kane and Cormac McCallion came on up front and both worked hard and created a few chances. In the dying minutes of the game after another couple of brilliant saves from Gallagher, McCallion pressed high on Glenshane at the back, won the ball and played in Rafferty to complete his hat-trick. Unlucky for Glenshane who were very strong in the first half, but it’s DC who march on into the next round.

2005s 0 - 4 Newcastle

It was a tough game on Friday night for the boys against a very impressive Newcastle side. The lads were three down in the first half but after a good half time team talk, they came out fighting. They worked extremely hard to keep Newcastle at bay for most of the second half but frustratingly another goal slipped past to make it four. To their credit, the lads kept fighting for that consolidation goal when in previous seasons they would have thrown in the towel and credit must go to their coaches for improving the lads attitude. But for some great defending from the back four and great saves from Shea Reid, Newcastle could easily have had more goals. The coaching team of Shiels and Crockett commented that they were proud of the boys for putting up a good fight and thanked the parents for all the support from the sideline.

Phoenix Athletic 0 - 8 2007s

A good start by the young Celts on Saturday morning saw them go 1-0 up from a close range header by J Quinn early on. This spurred the lads on and they scored three more goals in the half through two close range headers from C Murray-Williams and R O’Kane and a nice dink finish over the keeper by J Quinn. HT 0-4.

DC scored early in the second half through B Kidd to make it five. J Quinn then finished a fine move which went from defence to attack to make it six. G McIvor then scored a lovely lob finish for number seven and B Kidd then scored number eight, beating and rounding the keeper for a tap in.

2008s 3 - 4 Moyola

Three nil down after 17 minutes, a few changes were made to shore up the defence and it worked. DC came out in the second half and goals from Michael, Ronan and a pile driver from PJ brought the lads level and very much back in to the game. Unfortunately, a mistake at the back allowed Moyola in to score a last gasp winner. A great battling performance from the lads.

2009s 1 - 2 1st Bangor Juniors

It was a tough day at the office for the 2009s as they struggled to hit the heights of the last few weeks against a decent 1st Bangor Juniors side in the NIBFA Cup.

DC had a panicked first half, struggling to get the ball down and playing. Despite this the lads managed to grab the lead as an excellent Pádraig McWilliams corner was converted by Pól McPeake. From this point on Bangor took advantage of the unsettled young Celts and grabbed two goals in quick succession. At times DC threatened on the counter, Bangor struggling to deal with the threat of Shéa O’Hagan who rattled the post after being played in by a superb ball from Noah Murphy. HT 2-1

DC came out more settled in the second half and this was reflected in their performance as they really pushed Bangor back. The lads had chances to get that equaliser which would have given them the momentum to go on and win the game but it wasn’t to be on the day, with luck being on the Bangor side with near own goals and chances that were being scored in the last few weeks just not falling for the boys.

The lads came off disappointed as they knew if they played the way they did in the second half in the first, they could have came away with the win. However, they should hold their heads high for putting up such a fight and for the run of form that they’ve been on.

2010s 2 - 1 Coleraine 2011s

The 2010s gained a hard earned victory over a well drilled Coleraine 2011 team on Saturday morning in Coleraine. Coleraine started strongly and had the young Celts under a lot of pressure for most of the first half, as DC struggled to get in to the game early on. As the half wore on DC began to get further up the pitch and looked more threatening. Despite their early pressure, it was through a breakaway attack that Coleraine deservedly took the lead with a low shot to the corner late in the half. HT 0-1

DC started the 2nd half with much more intent and began to create more chances. One of these attacks ended with Owen getting brought down in the box for a penalty, which Odhran K dispatched to the corner of the net to level up the scores. Now very much on top and with 10 minutes left, DC pushed for another and got their reward five minutes later when Fionn C rifled to the net after some great footwork inside the box. The last five minutes were end to end, but strong work from DC kept Coleraine out.

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