Downpatrick Earn Semi-Final Spot Against Kilmore In Border Cup
Downpatrick arrived at Seaview for there Border Cup Quarter-Final against 1st Bangor far from full strength, unable to call upon Blaine Connolly, Chris McDowell, Conor McKenna, Gerard Collins, Chrissy Mullan, Sean McMahon and Andy Baggley.
For one reason or another they new they had it all to do against a very experienced Bangor team. Knowing that, a mouth-watering tie with neighbours Kilmore Rec awaited and Downpatrick certainly relished the challenge.
Both teams started slowly and it was clear to see there were nerves on show but it was Bangor who struck first. Hesitation by Ciaran McGarrity lead to him being out muscled and when through on goal, 1st Bangor midfielder Marty Robinson made no mistake with his drive past keeper Conan Russell. Not for the first time in this year’s Border Cup, Downpatrick found themselves behind, but the players drew on their previous experience and set about getting back on level terms with 1st Bangor.
Neat midfield play and solid defending didn’t bring many chances until the 30th minute when winger Barry Treacy whipped in a cross which was nodded down by striker Stephen Galbraith into the path of midfielder Matthew McGarrity who smashed it into the roof of the net to bring the sides level at the break. The remainder of the half saw both teams cancel each other out with most of the play happening in the midfield area.
It appeared Downpatrick had plenty more gears to find in the second half and to their credit they did, with Liam Graham and Andrew Telford controlling midfield and excellent support provided from Terence Bell, Treacy, Barry FItzsimons and Matthew Carson.
They started creating chances for striker Galbraith. Downpatrick began to pile serious pressure on the 1st Bangor defence and it looked like only a matter of time before they went in front, but the 1st Bangor keeper had other ideas. He produced amazing saves from shots from Galbraith, Telford, Graham and McGarrity to keep the match level. 1st Bangor were never out of the tie and but were restricted to only a few counter attacks of note, and Downpatrick’s defence were outstanding in dealing with Bangor and we’re well marshalled by Mark Curran.
As time ticked into the 40th minute Downpatrick’s break came, a tame effort from Treacy took a deflection and wrong footed the 1st Bangor keeper but he somehow still managed to get his finger tips to it. Unfortunately for him Andrew Telford was quickest to react and slid it past him to send the Downpatrick players managers and supporters into wild celebrations.
With five minutes remaining 1st Bangor pushed for the equaliser and only for the save of the season from Conan Russell can Downpatrick now look forward to their derby match with Kilmore Rec on Wednesday 27 November.
Downpatrick: 1) C Russell 2) B Fitzsimons 3) M Carson 4) C McGarrity 5) M Curran 6) A Telford 7) B Treacy 8) M McGarrity 9) S Galbraith 10) L Graham 11) T Bell 12) C Curran 14) F Ward 15) C Killen