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Harps Edge Tight Senior Encounter
Jun. 9, 2017
SENIOR LEAGUE DIVISION 1: Derrygonnelly 0-11 v 1-7 Belcoo
The Seniors were to come up a point short after a tight contest with league leaders Derrygonnelly at the Harps venue on Friday evening. The O'Rahilly's adopting a defensive strategy which frusted the home side for large parts of the contest while Belcoo picked off scores with their fleeting forward moves.
The visitors worked hard for the hour and will be frustrated their efforts yielded nothing in the end. It was point for point, level on several occasions in the second half but a late Paul Ward point ensured the Harps remain at the summit while the O'Rahilly's prop up the rest.
Belcoo had kept Derrygonnelly out for five minutes before their first venture into the opposition territory yielded a score. James McGrath turned the ball before feeding Jonathan Feeley for a well taken score. Paul Ward, Feeley and Garvan McGinley all traded frees for two all on 15minutes. Stephen McGuillon landed the only point from play by the Harps in the first period to lead but Belcoo continued to force the hosts into errant passes and pressured kicks for scores.
The visitors received a great fulip on 18minutes when they broke forward, Niall McGovern finding Paul McGrath who passed the ball across the goalmouth for Jonathan Feeley to thump into the net. 1-2 to 0-3.
Bhoyed by the goal the O'Rahilly's continued to be patient when in possession and a number of passes inside the Derrygonnelly half seen the ball worked out to Philip Leonard on the left and he pinged over a fine point.
Three to the good, things were going well however by the interval Derrygonnelly were back to within one. Belcoo will be disappointed with the confession of the two late frees, Ward and McGinley clipping over from comfortable distances. 1-3 to 0-5 at the break.
Ward levelled from a free early in the second half before Lee Jones pointed from play. Stephen McGuillion had a goal chance, Philip Leonard throwing himself on the ball to make the block. Belcoo were struggling to get a foothold in the tie as Derrygonnelly squeeze them in, forcing good turnovers.
The visitors though straightened themselves. A great flick away by Garvan McGinley denied James McGrath a goal chance after a good counter upfield. Aaron Dolan was to slot a 45 after Niall McGovern seen his effort blocked while Dolan landed a long range point off the left foot.
Barry McGrath had come off the bench to score for Derrygonnelly and it was 0-8 to 1-5 with 15mins to play.
Belcoo almost hit a second goal but for a stunning save by Jack Kelly. Paul McGrath has marked a kickout from Gary Doherty before launching the ball into Ian Corrigan who caught it above the fullback, turned and fired a great strike low to the corner but Kelly made a fine save with his feet.
Aaron Dolan did fire over a point moments later to give the visitors the lead but Niall Gallagher tied proceedings with one from play.
Jack Kelly was called into action to make a second great save after Aaron Dolan had raced in from the right sideline, again the 'keepers feet denying Belcoo the goal.
Paul Ward clipped a free, James McGrath stroked a free from 50metres to level again with three minutes to play. The draw looked the likely outcome but Paul Ward found a pocket and a half yard on the left to arrow over what proved to be the winning score in the final minute.
Belcoo had a late free from out wide, some 50+ metres from goal, Jonathan Feeley had the distance but the effort tailed narrowly wide.
Belcoo for all their hard work still came up the wrong side of the result but can take positives from this outing as the season reached the halfway point this evening.
Team. Gary Doherty, Martin Corrigan, Niall Leonard, Brendan McPartland, Dean McDermott, Philip Leonard (0-1), Barry McGovern, Niall McGovern, James McGrath (0-1), Stephen Nolan, Paul McGrath, Christopher Leonard, Aaron Dolan (0-3), Jonathan Feeley (1-2), Ian Corrigan. Sub used James Gillespie
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