Saturday 29th October – Lisburn Invitational Junior League under 15’s
Downpatrick FC 2 Windmill 1
Downpatrick took on the current league leaders Windmill in a truly exciting game at Dromore on Saturday morning. Going into the game, Downpatrick new that a victory over Windmill would see them leapfrog above them in the table and from the first whistle they were determined to make it happen.
Declan Looney beat his man down the right wing before sliding the ball into Ruairi Quinn in the box, Quinn then played the ball back out to Tom Smyth at the edge of the box and the midfielder hit a rocket into the top corner to give his side the lead.
Immediately from the restart Ruairi Quinn scored the perfect individual goal. The left winger chased the ball down giving the Windmill right back no time. He nicked the ball of him, flicked it over the oncoming centre halves head then hit a lovely volley in the roof of the net.
Windmill got one back just before halftime as Downpatrick failed to clear the ball on a few occasions and their striker gave Campbell no chance in the Downpatrick net. For most of the second half Downpatrick played on the Windmill 18-yard line, working extremely hard to hold onto their lead with star man Thomas Fitzsimons directing his defence to ensure the three points.
Saturday 29th October – Lisburn Invitational Junior League under 19’s
Downpatrick FC 5 Lisburn Rangers 0
From the first whistle both teams signalled their intent on producing an exciting game of football with the game moving from end to end. A high intensity from Downpatrick constantly forced Lisburn to play fast football but they were under pressure. It was Downpatrick though that had the better chances, with Andrew McCoubrey hitting the bar and Callum Shields driving just over from the edge of the box.
The second half started with Downpatrick moving up a gear, they had better composure, discipline and started to create more chances. A clever side pass received by Ben Jamison saw him drive into space and with a great through ball he found Callum Shields’ intelligent run in behind the centre half. Callum took a touch then struck a sweet shot into the bottom corner.
The first goal took the sting out of Lisburn and suddenly looked jaded which Downpatrick took advantage of. Great composure from Matthew Shearer saw him beat the full back and send a pin point cross to the back post where James Mahoney soared to power home the header. Confidence was high now and Joe Healy thundered a 20 harder of the underside of the bar but the on rushing Sam Kinnear followed up as the Lisburn defence stood and watched as he headed home the rebound.
The impressive Kinnear then scored from 20 yards with a sweetly struck shot following a great passing move. Downpatrick were merciless now and running strong right to the final whistle. Sam Kinnear turned provider with almost the last kick of the game, to place a square ball to Joe Healy at the back post to make it 5. Special mention to disciplined Downpatrick defence of John Hill, Ben Campbell, Conor Breen and Ben Jamison who along with keeper Ronan Holland kept their third clean sheet in last four matches.
Saturday 29th October – Downpatrick Youth Football League Under 15’s
Downpatrick FC 3 Celtic Bhoys 1
Downpatrick were determined from the first kick to win this local derby and immediately pushed forward and tried to control the midfield with the back line knowing they would have to be steadfast against a Celtic Boys attacking line that was very strong. Jack Fitzsimons, Ethan Breen, Rian McShane and Naoise O’Hagan strove to break down a disciplined defence and initial attacks from Fitzsimons and Luke Shields went wide or were easily collected by the goalkeeper.
At the start of the second half Downpatrick had the momentum and lessons learnt from the first half were monopolised and despite early attempts by Celtic Bhoys to attack in force and speed, the back line of Conail Gardner, Gregory Kelly, Andrew McGrattan and Collie Jones were steadfast. The deadlock was broken on 8 minutes a pass from Fitzsimons to Breen was knocked on, falling to striker Ethan Artt who controlled the ball with 2 defenders shadowing and with it lifting, volleyed it into the back of the net.
This proved the catalyst for a quality second half by both teams. Celtic Bhoys showed pace and determination but couldn’t get the breaks. A corner by Artt on 13 minutes sent the Celtic defence into disarray and Breen followed up with a controlled strike for Downpatrick’s 2nd. Substitutes Caolan McKeown and Ruairi Murphy got stuck in straight away and contributed well to midfield play.
Celtic Bhoys kept the pressure up with fast breaks down the wings and an attack on 19 minutes were awarded a penalty kick, their player being brought down in the box and indiscipline following the decision resulted in the dismissal of Gregory Kelly. Celtic Bhoys then brought it back to 2-1 despite the best efforts of Matthew Killen in goal.
A 10-man Downpatrick were determined not to be undone and still continued their assault with again set plays causing chaos. The boys were not content to simply hold out to the final whistle and on 24 minutes, another curving corner kick from Artt was finished convincingly by Collie Jones to make it 3-1. A very much enjoyable match with both teams working hard in both halves.