By Jim Patterson
The young North Down sixth eleven entertained Lisnagarvey sixths in the Minor Cup at Comber Leisure Centre on 9 March. Unfortunately, yet again, North Down’s youngest team was confronted by a side featuring many players from more senior teams and as has happened so often this season they held out for most of the game before eventually going under to physically stronger opposition.
Josh Gilmore again got the sixths off to an ideal start scoring from close in after 8 minutes but Garvey hit back with an equaliser 4 minutes later. Garvey rarely threatened after that as the central spine of the North Down team of Paul Johnston, Conor Millar and Kai Jenkins controlled the midfield. Only a lack of composure up front from the home team and a number of good saves from Milliken in goals kept Garvey in the game.
Both teams had chances early in the second half from a number of penalty corners but the defences were up to the task and the game continued the pattern of the first half with North Down controlling the midfield but making little impact up front. Garvey finally got two killer goals in a five minute spell with 13 minutes to go and despite the prompting of veteran Johnston at the back North Down were unable to get back into the game. This was another excellent learning experience for the young team as they go into their two final league matches of the season starting this Saturday away to a strong Portadown third eleven.