Senior League A
This week saw Maghery host Crossmaglen Rangers in the only game in the Senior League A section. The opening period was a tight tussle between two even matched sides as they tied at the interval 1-6 apiece. Maghery controlled the second period however and saw out a brilliant 3-12 to 1-10 win. Their win now leaves them four points clear at the top of the table with four games remaining, Cross their nearest challengers with 12 points.
Senior League B
Granemore 0-9 Pearse Ogs 1-12
Victory for Pearse Ogs sees them joint top with Clann Eireann, their promotion hopes very much still alive, with Granemore now falling four points behind the leaders in third place although they have two games in hand to try and reel back the front two, insuring an exciting finish to the end of the league campaign.
Granemore took an early lead on Friday evening with a point in the opening minute through Pete Carr but they couldn’t capitalise on their early promise as the Ogs drove three points ahead with the Duffy brothers Paul and Anto (2) on target as well as Justin Graham. It was the 27th minute before the hosts raised another white flag, Brendan Boylan striking a point to half the deficit.
Anto Duffy and Jason O’Neill both converted placed balls for their sides to see an end to the opening period, the town side ahead 0-5 to 0-3. Although low scoring the game was played in great conditions with some fast flowing football on show.
Brendan Boylan got his second of the game straight from the throw in before points from Justin Graham and Marc Cullen allowed Pearse Ogs to drift into a three point lead. A brilliant five minute spell saw Granemore lead for the first time since the opening minute, as they looked to Jason O’Neill (3) and Lewis Hughes to fire them one point in front.
The Ogs fought back however and Anto Duffy levelled from a close range free. Pearse Ogs could have went ahead but for a brilliant save from Kevin Kelly but it wasn’t long until the Ogs found themselves in front as Chris Rafferty and James Freeman both broke forward to see their side take a two point advantage.
Five was the margin soon after as Cullen expertly converted from the penalty spot, placing the ball into the corner Kevin Kelly’s goal. Kelly denied further damage with a save, with the resulting 45 converted by Justin Graham. O’Neill and Boylan points weren’t enough to salvage a comeback and Anto Duffy’s final score saw Pearse Ogs victorious on a score line of Granemore 0-9 Pearse Ogs 1-12.
Elsewhere in the division Sarsfields surprising surpassed table toppers Clann Eireann with an impressive three point victory and gained only their second league win of the year. The sides were fairly even in the opening half with the High Moss side edging ahead at the break 1-5 to 0-7 before seeing out a 1-15 to 1-12 score line by the full time whistle.
Carrickcruppen 1-10 Keady 2-9
Keady came out on top of their away clash with Carrickcruppen on Thursday night, seeing them now joint top of the table with Tullysaran, both sides on 16 points. Carrickcruppen on the other hand find themselves in 5th position having won just four of their 11 games throughout the campaign.
The home side led by three after 8 minutes with Richard Keenan (2) and Cathal O’Grady both on target before the sides drew level two minutes later with Paudie Donnelly finding the net for the Michael Dwyer’s while Eugene McDonnell and Barry Molloy also found their range. Conor Sloan and Cathal O’Grady hit a brace for ‘Cruppen before a Jack Molloy goal and a John Carroll point for Keady saw the visitors in front 2-3 to 0-5 at half time.
Richard Keenan (2) exchanged points with Conor Corvan and Conor Renaghan at the start of the second period before Keenan and O’Grady closed the gap to two points. Paul Greene’s effort was cancelled out by Keenan before Conor and Odhran Fullerton fired their team further ahead. Eugene McDonnell hit Keady’s final score of the night while ‘Cruppen’s final contribution was a Patrick McCullagh goal deep into injury time although too late to salvage something from the game, Keady two point winners on the night.
Also in the lower section of the intermediate league Crossmaglen II played out a high scoring fixture as they hosted Eire Og on Friday evening. Crossmaglen just edged the win, outscoring the travelling side by the minimum of margins with a 4-11 to 2-6 victory. In the A sector of the league, Shane O’Neill’s and Clan na Gael finished all square with Shane O’Neill’s scoring 1-8 to the Lurgan sides 0-11
Clonmore 0-15 Belleek 1-11
Wednesday night saw the clash of the only two unbeaten teams in the whole of club football in Armagh as Clonmore hosted Belleek. The away team dominated the opening exchanges, leading by 6 points at the break but a brilliant second half performance saw Clonmore remain top of the table after gaining their 13 win of the season.
The game was upset by torrential showers leaving slippery underground conditions but the game went ahead and the teams played out a close encounter. Clonmore clawed their way back in the second period as they began to dominate proceedings around the middle of the field with Philip Mullan and centre half forward Cathal Cunningham working tirelessly to bring their side back into the game.
In the pulsating final moments Clonmore done brilliantly to hold on for a fantastic victory with their full back Jody Dixon forgetting his usual defensive duties to power forward and score the crucial winning score. Some erratic shooting had let Belleek down but Clonmore were certainly deserving of their one point win which leaves them in pole position to reach the intermediate league for next season.
Wednesday night also saw action between Dorsey Emmets and Killeavy II, with the home side just scrapping through by two points, winning 2-12 to 1-13.
Corrinshego 1-10 Derrynoose 3-17
Derrynoose gained an important two points on the road last Thursday evening with a double scores victory over Corrinshego. 13 points separated the teams by the last whistle but it was the Conor McNally show for the duration of the contest as the forwards accuracy in front of the posts insured the win for his travelling side, hitting 1-10 on the night.
McNally’s first two points were matched by Corrinshego with the sides tied two points each after 12 minutes. Pearse Lennon and Sean Leonard knocked over points before the sides were level once more in a tit for tat first 15 minutes. Corrinshego edged ahead before Stephen Keenan raised his sides first green flag. Peter McKearney, McNally (3) and Keenan all scored while the hosts replied with 1-1 to see out the half, Derrynoose in front 1-9 to 1-6.
McNally opened the scoring again before striking the net to see his side take a 7 point lead. Sean Leonard exchanged scores with the home side while Pearse Lennon and McNally furthered the eventual winners lead to 9. Corrinshego’s second score of the half was cancelled out by another from McNally while the home side also split points from Pearse Lennon and the untouchable McNally.
McNally got one final point of the night prior to Derrynoose’s third goal of the evening through the boot of Rory Moynagh who saw their side 14 clear. Corrinshego did hit the final point of the evening but the damage had already been done and Derrynoose ran out easy winners.
Clady travelled to Killeavy on Friday evening and came home on their wrong side of a one point margin. The hosts were by far the better side in the first 30 minutes, leading at the interval by 2-6 to 1-2. Clady did drag themselves back into contention with the accuracy of Liam Doyle helping them to find their rhythm, but 18 wides on the night proved costly and the Clady men lost out by a single point, 2-9 to 1-11.
Killeavy II played their second game in three days on Sunday morning, away to Corrinshego who fielded for the second time this week. The hosts Corrinshego just scrapped over the line after an action packed 60 minutes, winning on a score line of Corrinshego 2-15 to Killeavy’s 4-9. Sunday also saw Derrynoose line out for the second time this week away to Collegeland, winning 1-17 to 3-9, seeing them stay in third place in the table.