North Down seconds hosted Garvey seconds in the Irish Junior Cup on Saturday at Regent House, a late change of venue due to floodlight failure at Comber Leisure Centre.
Garvey showed up with a full 18 man squad and the North Down approach was to play in the same fashion as in Round One, all out attack and taking the game to the opposition.
Within the first few minutes the Garvey team were fully aware that they were in for a match and the Comber men in no mood for a rollover which appeared to agitate the Garvey men. North Down started well with good possession from the experienced Paul Adgey and Andy Walls at the back and created a few chances through the usual Gareth McKeown trickery in the circle. As the game flowed it was Garvey’s turn in possession and working their own chances. Sam Martin was in fine form all afternoon and denied them at multiple occasions. After a foot on the goal line from a short corner Garvey went 1-0 ahead.
Going into the 2nd quarter with nothing to fear, North Down continued to press and search for the equaliser which eventually came from a Chris Speers short corner *top bins*. Game on.
As the game progressed the Garvey men were frequently appealing to the umpires due to the excellent nature of the tackles coming in and eventually Chris Speers was rested on a green card for 2 minutes closely followed by Scott Irwin. An incorrectly awarded short corner that was deemed to come off an Andy walls foot gave the Garvey men the chance to go up 2-1 which they accepted. They continued to press for another but Sam Martin in goals was in great form.
Into the last quarter with nothing to lose North Down went man for man and went for it. Andy Walls found another gear was often seen forcing forward from centre back and not so gracefully working back to recover. North Down continued to push for that equaliser but it was not to be and on the final whistle going the Garvey men celebrated like they had won the cup. North Down came off disapointed as they matched then throughout and deserved more.
Burch Autos Man of the match was Sam Martin
Meanwhile at Nendrum College the 5th XI scored a morale boosting 4-3 victory against Raphoe thirds to end a run of high scoring defeats. The experienced home side relished the battle against their typically robust Donegal visitors with the game played in excellent spirits. A Peter Shields double strike was followed by goals from sam Pyper and Paul McCaughey to secure a solid mid table position for the fifths.