South Antrim 2003

Archived Reports, Player Profiles & Information

South Antrim League 2003

Gort na Mona 0-13 2-05 Eire Og L
Rossa 0-11 0-06 Eire Og L
Eire Og 2-05 0-18 St Paul's L
Eire Og 1-05 1-06 McCracken's L
Eire Og - - St Gall's W
Dwyers 2-12 8-14 Eire Og W
St Malachy's 1-11 4-08 Eire Og W
St Teresa's - - Eire Og L

Martin Cup 2003

Quarter-Final: 31st July 2003 at Gort na Mona 7.30pm
Eire Og 1-11 2-09 Gort na Mona

Two soft goals conceded and too many wides contributed to a one point defeat to league runners-up Gort na Mona in this Martin Cup quarter final. It was a game that the Ogs should have won comfortably.

Both teams exchanged a couple of points each, Peter Elliott scoring from frees, before a long hopeful free kick, mid way through the half, produced a really soft penalty as the Gort na Mona full forward was pushed in the back. Keeper Rowan Vernon was unlucky as he got a good hand to the ball, but could only push it on to the post and in. The Ogs responded well with points from Conor Wills, Emmett Holmes, Chris Smye and Niall McGurk to lead 0-07 to 1-02 at half time. The lead should have been greater had it not been for our 8 wides.

Eire Og started well in the second half, but soon became frustrated with the referee, who didn't let the game flow and awarded out frees, seemingly, for nothing much. Indeed Gort na Mona too, incurred the wrath of the referee as both sides were given yellow cards and a red card for an unlucky Gort defender. It was a clean game, with both sides wanting to play football and didn't warrant the number of yellow and red cards.

Playing with the hill, Gort na Mona came back into the game, but Chris Smye and Peter Elliott pointed for the Ogs, before Sean O'Neill took a short free and Colm McAuley and Conor Wills combined for McAuley to bury the ball in the Gort net to regain the lead. But the Ogs' joy was shortlived as Gort na Mona won the resulting kickout and fed their speedy half forward who ran in on goal and beat Vernon high at his near post with a powerful shot. Shellshocked the Ogs conceded another two points. With 5 minutes to go Eire Og were two down. Elliott pointed a free and we pushed for the equaliser, but our poor shooting of the first half returned as five scoreable chances were spurned. Gort na Mona had held to win by one point. The mood in the Ogs' dressing room was frustration and disappointment. But we can build on this, knowing how close we are to being able to win.

South Antrim League Results

Gort na Mona 0-13 Éire Óg 2-05

The Ogs went 2-05 to 0-04 points up at half time. Then in the second half it all went pear shaped. Fergal Lynch went off injured, replaced by Waldo. Dee McBryan also got injured and Decky got sent off. The Ogs didn't score in the second half and lost by 2 points in the end, a game they should have won easily.

St Paul’s 0-18 Eire Og 2-5

The Ogs started this game with a lot of new faces in the team, with several regulars being rested. Despite playing against a very strong breeze the Ogs started well. However towards the end of the first half St Paul’s began to dominate and went in at the break 0-9 to 1-0 ahead.

Playing with the aid of the wind in the 2nd half the Ogs failed to take advantage and despite closing the gap to 4 points early in the 2nd half, it was St Paul’s who finished the strongest and ran out comfortable winners by 7 points.

Best for the Ogs were Ciaran Ryan, Decky, Niall McGurk and Johnny Quinn in defence, Colm McAuley and Johnny Savage in midfield with Rod McCrory, DK & Fergal Lynch, when introduced, in attack. Fergal’s performance in the forward line will certainly give the senior management team extra options in attack coming up to the Championship!

Eire Og 1-5 McCrackens 1-6

Again the Ogs were forced to field without many regulars, due to Sunday’s Championship game, nonetheless this was a very encouraging display from the makeshift team at Woodlands. McCrackens, fielding a very young mobile team (unlike the Ogs who fielded its usual percentage of heavyweights) started brightly but strong defending from Decky and Niall Gribben and several excellent saves from Kevy Brown kept the Ogs in the game. Eventually the Ogs settled into the game, with DK, Hugh Dornan and Barry Hall showing up well in attack. A Colm McAuley goal just before half time left the Ogs trailing by a point at half time 0-5 to 1-1.

The introduction of Crick Browning at half time added much needed steel and experience to the Ogs attack as they played with the aid of the wind. Despite the early dominance in the second half, the Ogs failed to punish McCrackens, due to some wayward shooting - especially from the usually unreliable Crick!! A rare McCrackens attack resulted in the Ogs conceding a scrappy goal. A couple of excellent points from Colm McAuley kept the Ogs in touch, and the Ogs half back line of Decky, Niall McGurk and the returning Conor Muldoon began to dictate the pace of the game. Despite pressing for the last 10 minutes the Ogs could not get the necessary scores to win the game and in the end McCrackens scraped home by a point.

A very much improved performance from the Ogs this week and it would be unfair to single out any players for special mention. However a special word of praise must go to the ballboy behind the McCrackens' goal in the second half as he had to risk life and limb to climb over railings and dodge the traffic on the motorway just to retrieve the ball after one of Crick’s many shot at goals!!!!!!!

Dwyers 2-12 Éire Óg 8-14

It was back to winning ways for the Ogs as they defeated a very spirited Dwyers team. Straight from the throw in the Ogs dominated with 2 quick goals from Peter Elliott in as many minutes. With the Ogs midfield of McAuley and O'Neill winning plenty of ball, the Ogs extended their lead with goals from Barry Hall and Kevy Brown. All the Ogs were getting in on the scoring act (well all except one - Crick!!) and further points from Peter Elliott, Chris Smye and Colm McAuley followed. Any rare Dwyers attacks were stifled by the Ogs defence with Conor 'Ging' Henderson, Johnny Quinn and Ciaran Ryan making timely interceptions.

Half Time: Eire Og 4-7 Dwyers 0-2.

Dwyers, playing with the aid of a strong breeze in the second half, came more and more into the game and they received an early boost when Niall Gribben flicked the ball over his own keeper. Further points followed and the Ogs were struggling to get the ball forward. The Ogs badly needed some inspiration, and they soon received it in the shape of Crick Browning. Crick answered all his critics when he scored 3 outstanding points (this was after 8 misses!!). Dwyers aided by a gift of a goal and further points put the speedy(!?!) Ogs full back line under a lot of pressure. However further points from Elliott, Brown and Hall left the Ogs comfortable winners.

Best for the Ogs were Johnny Quinn, Conor Muldoon and Ciaran Ryan in defence, and in midfield the 'evergreen' Sean O'Neill seems to have found a new lease of life since adopting his new 'roving' role leaving everyone else to do the running. Chris Smye, Peter Elliott and Crick Browning were the pick of the forwards. Crick's accuracy at hitting the target certainly impressed the watching Gerry Adams who enquired 'Is he the sniper from South Armagh?'

St Malachys 1-11 Eire Og 4-8

Eire Og notched up their 3rd consecutive victory with an impressive 6 points victory over a strong St Malachys played in perfect conditions at Cherryvale. The first half was evenly matched. Most of the St Malachys attacks were stifled by strong Ogs defending with Fintan Morgan expertly marshalling the full back line and Ryan, Corner and Gribben making timely interceptions. Points from Hall, Smye, McAuley and O'Neill, and an excellent Elliott goal give the Ogs a slender half time lead.

The second half saw the Ogs midfield of McAuley and the roving O'Neill take control and 3 goals from Elliott, Hall and Brown saw the Ogs home in style. This was a great team performance from the Ogs against a gallant St Malachys team. Best for the winners were Wills and McGurk in defence, the evergreen Sean O'Neill in midfield with Brown, Hall and Elliott the pick of the forwards.