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Seniors Bow Out Of Ulster As Season Ends
Oct. 29, 2017
Ulster Intermediate Championship Quarter Final: Newbridge 3-16 v 1-9 Belcoo
The Senior season come to it’s end following Saturday nights defeat in the Ulster Intermediate Championship, the O’Rahilly’s held a slender interval lead, 1-8 to 1-7, however having played with a strong wind in that half, the lead needed to be more. Newbridge levelled and never looked back as they pushed on to run out comfortable winners, the Derry men 2-9 to 0-1 winners of the second half to secure a 3-16 to 1-9 win.
Belcoo began in blistering fashion, Jonathan Feeley 25seconds, Paul McGrath 80seconds, two points from play on the board. Exactly what was required. Newbridge responded with a point from Kevin Sweeney but some great defending from Belcoo prevented another.
It was an incredibly open encounter with some good football on show, Dessie McColgan bursting forward to level on 5minutes. The O’Rahilly’s would kick two wides before Newbridge netted their first goal on 8minutes as they cut through the Belcoo defence.
The response was good though from the Fermanagh Champions. Paul McGrath fielded a high ball 25yards from goal and slipped it to the onrushing Christopher Leonard who clipped it over on the run. Jonathan Feeley angled over a fine score from the left to leave one between them moments later.
Belcoo retook the lead with their only goal of the contest, a long ball into the danger zone by Aaron Dolan seen Paul McGrath outjump goalkeeper and defender to flick the ball to the net. 1-4 to 1-2 Belcoo ahead, just 11minutes on the clock.
Danny Mulholland and Mark McGrogan had the sides level again by the 14th minute before some patient build up play between Jonathan Feeley and Paul McGrath seen James McGrath join the attack and with the outside of the boot from the right wing, he had his side ahead once more 1-5 to 1-4.
It remained end to end, teenagers Eoin Shiels and Gerard McHugh were going well at the back for the O’Rahilly’s breaking upfield while Niall McGovern, Brian Cox and Christopher Leonard were working hard in the middle sector. McGrath and Feeley were winning any ball sent their way inside as the game entered the final 10minutes of the first half.
Newbridge returned to the lead, Conor Doherty and a free from Kevin Sweeney had them one up again but a long solo run from Paul McGrath seen him upended and Feeley duly applied the finish from a 14m free. Padraig McGrogan fisted a Newbridge score but Belcoo went in one up at the break, Feeley who was torturing the Newbridge defence with two great scores from play having taken neat passes from Christopher Leonard and James McGrath. 1-8 to 1-7.
The second half didn’t go to plan for Belcoo, into a stiff breeze they struggled to gain a foothold. Newbridge claiming a few ‘marks’ and most break balls around the middle, they powered forward and hit two goals and a number of points to move 3-11 to 1-8 ahead by the 44th minute.
In this spell Belcoo were punished for any slight error going forward, a misplaced pass, mishandled ball and even sloppy solo’s seen Newbridge break down the field at a ferious pace to add to their tally.
The O’Rahilly’s sole score in the second half was a 23metre free by Jonathan Feeley. To their credit Belcoo never gave in, they worked, battled and tried their best but they were up against a stronger side on the day.
The season has ended with the Intermediate Title on the table, Senior Championship Football will be played in 2018 but unfortunately following Relegation from the league, they will play Division 2 football for the first time since 2006. We thank the players and management for their time and efforts throughout this season.
Team: Gary Doherty, Ryan McGovern, Niall Leonard, Eoin Shiels, Barry McGovern, Gavin Leonard, Ryan Leonard, Brian Cox, Niall McGovern, Christopher Leonard (0-1), James McGrath (0-1), Gerard McHugh, Paul McGrath (1-1), Jonathan Feeley (0-6), Aaron Dolan.
Black Card sub 17mins, Dean McDermott for Aaron Dolan. Subs Used. Niall Cullen, Brendan McPartland, Michael McGourty, Gerard Mellor, Shane McAloon.
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