Killyleagh inched closer to their dream of promotion back to the Amateur League’s Premier Section with a 10 star showing on Saturday writes Chris Hagan.
The YC front line was clinical, scoring a number of outstanding goals, as they raced into a 6-0 half time lead before making it 9-0 by the 72nd minute.
Some of the play from Paul Sharvin’s team in the first half, and the quality of the goals, was stunning as they swept aside the challenge of a fairly young Lisburn team that, to their credit, refused to give up.
Kieran Sullivan opened the scoring with Killyleagh’s first serious shot of the game after six minutes. He beat his marker before bending the ball past Rangers keeper Colin Tinsley. Within five minutes Jack Sharvin made it 2-0.
Killyleagh were making light of the absence of top scorer Adam Neale, and among others missing were Lee Morrison, Jamie Sharvin and Ryan Blaney. They added a third goal in the 22nd minute when teenager Declan McComiskey latched onto a slack pass and played in BJ McMenamin whose finish was clinical. Then there was the rare sight of a headed goal from Darren McConnell who got on the end of a peach of a cross from Barry Treacey four minutes later to make it 4-0.
It was not so much that a youthful Lisburn were poor in the opening half, more they encountered a side which clinically took its chances, while at the back Johnny Cheevers, Niall Walsh and JJ Sharvin impressed.
Just short of the half-hour mark, though, the visitors’ Sean Duffy missed a penalty. Then from the rebound off the bar, Killyleagh keeper Aaron Carberry produced a stunning double save to deny the visitors’ best players Ross Harland and Padraig Hughes.
Killyleagh’s counter attacking was proving devastating and they deserved to add to their tally with some brilliant play in which Treacey, Jordan Kennedy, Jack Sharvin, McMenamin and McComiskey linked but the finish was missing.
It was only a delay in proceedings though for the fifth goal arrived in the 37th minute and what a goal it was. McMenamin was starting to torture the Rangers defence and when he beat his man and produced a neat cross, Jack Sharvin met it on the volley to give Tinsley no chance scoring a tremendous goal.
Sharvin was on fire and he made it 6-0 on the stroke of half time, completing his hat trick by finishing off a fine move involving McMenamin and McComiskey.
The goals continued at the start of the second half with McComiskey ramming home from close range in the 53rd minute after the visitors’ defence had been sliced open by a move involving McMenamin, Sharvin and Sullivan.
Just short of the hour mark McMenamin got his second, and Killyleagh’s eighth, with yet another masterclass in one-touch finishing inside the penalty area.
Manager Sharvin took the chance to bring on Stevie Kennedy for his first appearance since injury curtailed his season in October and Keegan Rice, who has not featured since November. Within minutes pacy wingman Kennedy had resumed where he left off, scoring from McMenamin’s pass after 72 minutes.
They got their reward with two brilliant strikes in quick succession in the 80th and 84th minutes from subs Ryan Francey and Alex Lalor to leave it 9-2.
But the YC made it 10 when Kennedy’s teasing cross was met by Rice and deflected into the net by a Lisburn defender. The final action of the game saw McMenamin denied his hat trick by a stunning save by Tinsley.
Lisburn Rangers are now positioned second bottom of Division 1a on 7 points and they are just a point behind Dunmurry Rec on 8 points. Both have played 20 games so far. Lisburn are in the middle of a rebuilding process and to their credit they kept their chins up and plugged away, showing their true potential against Killyleagh YC.
Killyleagh, leading Division 1a with 48 points, are well ahead of second placed Larne Tech on 32 points. They now have five league games left to play, three of them against their biggest rivals for promotion and Paul Sharvin’s team are taking nothing for granted. But this weekend they take a welcome break from league action as they travel to second-placed Premier Section side Shankhill with the prize a place in the last eight of the Clarence Cup.
Killyleagh YC: Aaron Carberry, Johnny Cheevers, Jon Joe Sharvin, Darren McConnell, Niall Walsh, Jordan Kennedy, Barry TReacy, BJ McMenamin, Declan McComiskey, Jack Sharvin, Kieran Sullivan. Subs: Stephen Kennedy, Keegan Rice, Robbie Hagan.
Lisburn Rangers: Robin Tinsley, Matthew Armstrong, Deane Farr, Ross Harland, Criag Patterson, Barry Webb, Kevin Farley, Jake McDonald, Sean Duffy, Ashley Shaw, Padraic Hughes. Subs: Max Lalor, Michael Downey, Ryan Gracey.