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Winning Start To Ulster League
Feb. 1, 2015
Ulster League Group E: St. Colm’s Drum 2-5 v 3-13 Belcoo O’Rahilly’s
Belcoo kickstarted their 2015 season with a good 3-13 to 2-5 success in their Ulster League opener against St. Colm's Drum on the 4G surface at Derry's Owenbeg Complex.
The O'Rahilly's were quickly out of the blocks registering four early points. Jonathan Feeley tapping over a free kick when Aidan McGrath was brought down in front of goal before Ciaran Flaherty joined the attack from wing back to land a good score. Paul McGrath would then point two long range efforts from play giving the visitors a 0-4 to 0-1 lead. Drum's Rory O'Reilly registering there sole score from a placed ball.
The hosts would have their best spell of the game midway through the half as they fired in two quick goals. Rory O'Reilly and Paddy Moore combined to cut through the Belcoo defense with O'Reilly tucking the ball under Daniel Ray.
A looping long range shot was then punched to the net by James McCartney while another O'Reilly free seen the Derry men move into a 2-2 to 0-4 lead.
Belcoo responded well over the closing 10minutes of the half to go in leading 3-6 to 2-3 at the interval.
Jonathan Feeley knocked over a free after Flaherty was felled before adding a good score from play. Drum goalkeeper Eunan O'Hara then made a stunning save low to his left to deny Feeley a certain goal.
The goals would come for Belcoo before the break and they finished the half with 3 goals in 5minutes. Patient build up play ended with Niall McGovern fisting the ball across to Gavin Leonard who punched into the corner beyond the dive of O'Hara.
Moments later James McGrath's shot rebounded off the bar with Aidan McGrath quickest to react, bundling the ball in from close range.
The third goal arrived from the resulting kickout, a short ball was played to a defender who coughed up possession under pressure from Christopher Leonard, he swiftly transferred the ball to Paul McGrath who raced through and placed the ball into the bottom corner. Half Time. Drum 2-3 v 3-6 Belcoo.
The visiting O'Rahilly's began the second half well but squandered three good opportunities in front of goal before Drum went down the other end and registered the first score of the half.
Belcoo straightened themselves in front of goal with Paul McGrath knocking over a left footed effort before Barry McGovern entered the fray and immediately registered a point after good work by John Carrigan.
Aidan McGrath won a free on the left which Paul McGrath converted before Jonathan Feeley landed two more points from play, a right footed effort and a smart fisted point.
Drum were second best at this stage but kept plugging away, adding two scores but it was Belcoo who held the upper hand and well taken points from Barry McGovern and Paul McGrath secured the win for the O'Rahilly's.
James McGrath, Ken McPartland and Adrian McCallion were pleased with their sides general showing at this very early stage of the year. Belcoo host Owen Roe's from Tyrone on Sunday 8th February at midday.
Team. Daniel Ray, Ryan Leonard, Niall Leonard, Gavin Leonard (1-0), Declan Leonard. Brian Cox, Ciaran Flaherty (0-1), Christopher Leonard, Niall McGovern, James McGrath, Paul McGrath (1-5, 1f), John Carrigan, Aidan McGrath (1-0), Jonathan Feeley (0-5, 2f), Ronan Meehan. Subs Used: Barry McGovern (0-2), Jack O'Dolan
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