Mills Go Down To Comber In Close Encounter

Irish Cup 3rd round : report by Cyril McKinney.

Saturday 3rd November 2018

Drumaness Mills 1 – 2 Comber Rec.

Aaron Milligan in action with Ruairi Fitzpatrick in the clash between Drumaness Mills and Comber Rec.

Comber travelled the short distance to Meadowvale for this Irish Cup 3rd round tie played in very wet conditions and despite going behind before half-time turned things round early in the second half with two opportunistic goals to win the tie 2-1.

Drumaness started well and the Comber keeper James Darlington had to be at his best to turn a low drive from Conall Corrigan around the post following good approach work from Ruairi Fitzpatrick on right wing.

On 16 minutes Comber were awarded a penalty when Wilson was upended.

The resulting penalty strike  from  Jack Smith was brilliantly saved by Drumaness keeper Rory Burns diving full stretch to his right and pushing the ball out for a corner. Drumaness’  Neil Taggart and Christian Holland both were yellow carded as the game got competitive and physical from both sides.

Drumaness were enjoying a lot of the play at this stage and, on 24 minutes, after a neat la-off from Stefan Mason, Ruairi Fitzpatrick cracked a pile driver that came back off the bar with the keeper well beaten. Then Drumaness’ Thomas McConville suffered a knock and had to be replaced on the half-hour by sub Stephen Deegan.

Drumaness were finally rewarded for their endeavours on 36 minutes when Corrigan  skipped past the defender on the left wing and sent over a quality cross for Mason to knock a thumping header to the Comber net.

Try as they might, Comber could not make inroads on the Drumaness goal despite good work from Connor, Milligan and Wilson and with the heavy rain pouring down the half ended with Drumaness holding on to their narrow lead.

With conditions deteriorating Comber came out in the second half on the front foot and from an early corner  R Whitehead volleyed over the bar sending out a message they were still after the points.

The Mills lost their influential centre-half Taggart through injury on 53 minutes and from then on Comber pressed on and were winning more of the possession and on 62 minutes were on level terms when the keeper failed to collect a cross from the Comber left wing and as it fell it was volleyed to the net by Comber’s Eamon Connor.

6 minutes later the Comber turn around was complete when Milligan took advantage of some hesitancy in the Drumaness defence to poke the ball home for just inside the box. As the game progressed the conditions were not helping either team play quality football and Drumaness could not get any clear cut chances to get back into the game.

Drumaness Mills: Rory Burns, Gary Murdock, Christian Holland, Neil Taggart, Thomas McConville, Michael McGarrity, Ruairi Fitzpatrick, Sean McQuoid, Stefan Mason, Marc Feenan, Conall Corrigan

Subs: Rory Mason for Corrigan, Philip Rogan for Taggart, Stephen Deegan for McConville

Comber Rec: James Darlington, Andrew Scott,  Adam Whitehead, R Whitehead, M Kane, Stuart Hanna, Eamon Connor, Bradkey Porter, Aaron Milligan, E Wilson, Jack Smith.

Subs: J Patmore  for Smith , S Fleck  for Kane , A Laird.