Drumaness Grinds Down 1st Bangor In Clarence Semi

Drumaness Mills Through To Clarence Cup Semi-Final Helped With A 4-Goal Blitz By Eoin Rooney


NFU Mutual Clarence Cup R5 (quarter-final),

Venue: Meadowvale, Saturday 6th April 2024,

Drumaness Mills 6 2 1st Bangor.

The match was still in doubt at 1pm due to Storm Kathleen but after a pitch inspection referee Rodney Hassard gave the green light and both both teams geared up for an exciting Clarence Cup round 5 clash writes Jim Masson.

In the opening minutes Drumaness made two quick breaks with a pass from Thomas McNeill to Connor Caldwell and from Conor McGourty to Adam Kearney.

View photos from match by Jim Masson on Facebook.

Both initiatives showed promise of things to come for Drumaness who looked confident.

This was followed by another break when captain Gary Murdock took a shot at the Bangor goal from outside the box testing keeper Tony Galbraith.

(l-r) Peter Brannigan came off with a leg injury but enjoyed an excellent game for Drumaness, Eoin Rooney scored four goals and Sharvin also scored pulling the team through also with an Adam Kearney goal to a 6-2 win over 1st Bangor. (Photos: Jim Masson ©)

Then Drumaness forward Jamie Sharvin hit a class dipping volley from just outside the box and it went inches over the top bar.

In the forward left position, Eoin Rooney was chomping at the bit and ran forward but his volley at the Bangor goal was just a fraction off the right hand post for what could have been a good opener.

Then on 7 minutes Rooney scored his opener with a through pass smashed it to the right hand side of the Bangor goal.

Sharvin was attacking well through the centre and getting some good balls fed through to him from midfield. Drumaness were showing their authority and Bangor had not yet challenged the home goal on ten minutes.

Drumaness Mills skipper Gary Murdock in action.

Drumaness were keeping up a steady pace in the game and attacking full-on and Bangor were just managing to contain them.

It wasn’t until 13 minutes that Drumaness keeper Mark Reid has his first real touch of the ball but the Bangor attack was well cleared up by the home defence.

Eoin Murray then hit a ball on target and it was heading into the goal but last second defending by Jordan Blair cleared it off the goal line for what was looking like a certain goal.

View photos from match by Jim Masson on Facebook.

Murdock then knocked the ball into the Bangor box and midfielder Peter Brannigan took a shot but it rose over the bar in the strong wind.

There was a moment of danger for Drumaness where Bangor’s Louis Blackstock hit a solid ball on target but it crashed off a Drumaness defender who was fortunate to be in the way blocking the shot.

Eoin Murray almost scores for Drumaness early in the first half against 1st Bangor.

Drumaness needed a second goal as their work-rate was high and they deserved a return.

But Bangor stepped up a gear in the latter part of the first half and looked like scoring a couple of times, the most notable being Conor Caldwell running at the goal but an off-side decision was given.

Caldwell was warming up and made an excellent pass through to Jame Seaton who faced an open goal but rushed the shot and went wide.

Drumaness left winger Adam Kearney then started to make deeo runs into the Bangor half and caused considerable havoc in the visitors’ defence.

Jamie Sharvin scores for Drumaness.

Just when Drumaness should have been watching their backs and not giving away an equaliser, that’s what did happen.

Bangor defender Ben Gordon was taken down at the edge of the Drumaness box and opening goal for Bangor came when on 28 minutes Jamie Craig hit a belter of a shot over the wall into the top of the net on 28 minutes.

Bangor then played with more purpose and determination and Drumaness had a game on their hands.

But 8 minutes later the ball was fired into the Bangor box and Murdock could not get turned to pop the ball over the line.

Murdock then fed the ball to Jamie Sharvin who took it clear of the mob of players in the Bangor goalmouth and hammered it into the right hand side of the net to put Drumaness 2-1 up on 36 minutes.

Something to shout about! Eoin Rooney scores four goals for Drumaness Mills against 1st Bangor.

Then just on the whistle for half time, Adam Kearney on the left scored a crucial goal putting light between the teams.

Kearney received a spot-perfect pass from Sharvin and ran into an open box at pace and nailed the ball into the centre of the Bangor net.

Three of the best: Four goal maestro Eoin Rooney with Jamie Sharvin and Adam Kearney who clocked up 6 goals altogether to beat 1st Bangor in the quarter final tie of the Clarence Cup.

In just a couple of minutes into the second half, Drumaness broke forward and Thomas McNeill made a good pass through to Kearney who charged the goal and defender Jamie Craig just managed to clear Kearney’s effort off the goal line.

Both teams certainly raised their games and the game ebbed to and fro in the early spell. It did get physical but it was well managed by referee Hassard.

Then Eoin Rooney scored his second goal from a Peter Brannigan pass from midfield. He rounded the defender and found space and took his shot well in the 59th minute.

The game trundled on at pace, with a few fouls slowing the overall game. Bangor now had little in their toolbox to fix the grinding Drumaness Mills onslaught.

View photos from match by Jim Masson on Facebook.

But they did manage to secure a corner taken by Craig and Jordan Blair headed it down to the floor of the Drumaness goal to make the score 4-2.

But Rooney was just warming up.

Rooney received the ball on the left and ran forward and found the space to pick his spot and crack home his hat-rick on 67 minutes.

The goal-hungry Rooney has a deceptively looking easy pace, piucked up the ball on 40 yards out from the Bangor goal.

Rooney cleared the defenders and on a 1:1 with the keeper chipped the ball on 75 minutes past Tony Galbraith.

At that point Rooney had proven he was a key asset to the Drumaness team and manager Ciaran Brannigan took him off replacing him with Ryan Kidd in case he got injured or carded and missed the next crucial game.

Drumaness’ Peter Brannigan who had come off earlier limped off to the dressing room with a ‘dead led’ after a kick early in the first half.

There was little chance of Bangor recovering from a 4-goal deficit and Drumaness hung on until the whistle.

This was another solid win by Drumaness Mills showing their can rise to the occasion.

They now face Kilmore Rec in a local derby in a Semi-Final of the Clarence Cup on:

Saturday 18th May 2024 at 4pm at Seaview, Belfast.

This match is sure to be a Bobby Dazzler.

Drumaness are lying 7th at the moment in the NAFL Premier League table, and Kilmore Rec are lying 8th in Division 1A below them.

But in a cup tie, form on a table may not count for a lot. It’s on the day… temperament, focus, confidence, determination and guts. Both teams have yodels of this, so it will be a great semi-final.

Both teams have a deficit of league games to play off yet, and they will be wanting to get through these with the minimum amount of wear and ear and injuries and yellow or red cards.

A match between Drumaness and Kilmore would itself have been a great final, but it was not to be.

The winner of this semi-final will play the winner of the other semi-final featuring Willowbank FC and Derriaghy which is being played on the same day at:

The Cliff on Saturday 18th May at 8pm.

Drumaness Mills: 1 Mark Reid 2 Thomas McNeill 3 Keegan Domican 4 Conor McGourty 5 Gary Murdock (C) 6 Peter Brannigan 17 Eoin Rooney 8 Joe Healy 9 Eoin Murray 10 Jamie Sharvin 11 Adam Kearney. Subs: 12 Daniel Bell 14 Ryan Kidd 15 Lewis Casement.

Ist Bangor: 1 Tony Galbraith 2 Ben Gordon 3 Jamie Craig 4 William Moore 5 Jordan Blair (c) 6 Louis Blackstock 7 Aaron McCrory 8 Blake Campbell Roy Bickerstaff 9 Connor Caldwell 10 Luke Novakovic., 11 Jake Seaton. Subs: Dylan Simpson 14 Rory Cubbon 15 Scott Shannon.

View photos from match by Jim Masson on Facebook.