By Peter Bond
The Under 11 boys travelled down to Banbridge on Sunday in the latest round of organised fixtures.
The first game of the day was against Banbridge B where the boys withstood heavy pressure on their goal and defended stoutly making numerous goal line clearances. Agonisingly with only a few seconds to go Bann B found the breakthrough for a 1-0 victory. the second and third game followed a similar pattern with time and time again North Down committing the cardinal sin of passing the pass across their own goal line and all too often straight to the opposition! The boys found themselves defeated 4-0 & 3-0 respectively.
In the penultimate game the penny finally dropped. In the second encounter Vs. Banbridge B, Thomas Corken hitting out from the back opted to play it wide… and to a player in a North Down shirt!! Eventually North Down was able to exert some pressure, winning a succession of free hits inside the oppositions half. It was from one such hit that Daniel Grimshaw broke the deadlock. He took a quick free to himself before unleashing an unstoppable drive into the Bann goal! A moment that was greeted with rapturous applause from the following North Down contingent – and fist pumping relief from the on looking coach! – A nail biter until the end the boy eventually hung on recording their first victory of the day!
However they were not finished there and I soon became double delight as they came from a goal behind to beat Antrim 2-1. Again there was marked improvement the North Down passing and movement, coupled with some excellent tackles and interceptions from Joshua Bradshaw and Cameron Glenn (who had given themselves the code names Zombie and Dinosaur for the day).
There were also great performances from Kyle Lewis-Ross, Robbie Davidson, Josh Young and Jake Murray. Jake was particularly unlucky not to find the net in the final game as a last ditch clearance from a defender looked suspiciously like a back stick.
Player of the tournament: Daniel Grimshaw.