GAA: Eoghan Rua power to win over Glen

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Only a point separated Glen and Coleraine going into the last quarter, Eoghan Rua just ahead 2-6 to 1-8, however a strong final fifteen minutes where they outscored the Maghera men 1-7 to 0-1 saw Coleraine win 3-13 to 1-9 in this Division 1 game last Sunday afternoon.

The first half was pretty even throughout although Eoghan Rua were ahead 1-4 to 0-2 by the end of the first quarter. Glen opened the scoring in their first attack inside 30 seconds as Ryan Winton fired over the bar. The home side were denied a goal just a couple of minutes later when Ryan McGeough saved superbly close in, Ciaran McGoldrick levelling for the visitors just a couple of minutes later from a free. Glen briefly took the lead again in the sixth minute through Mark O’Donnell but by the 10th minute Eoghan Rua were in front, Richard Carey and Ciaran McGoldrick scoring.

After Colm Hanlon had increased Eoghan Rua’s lead three goals inside as many minutes around the mid-point of the opening half provided good fare for the decent crowd on a perfect afternoon for football. The first of those goals came after Colm McGoldrick was brought down inside the penalty area, Ciaran McGoldrick striking the spot kick low to the corner of the Glen net. The home side responded well to that setback with a quick point and then they grabbed a goal within two minutes.

A long ball from Sean Gribbin unhinged the Eoghan Rua defence Ryan Winton slipping in behind to gather and blast to the net from close range. That was in the 17th minute and had reduced the gap to the minimum but just a minute later Kieran Lagan’s long ball found Colm McGoldrick who held off his man before drilling his shot to the net. Coleraine then had a couple of chances to increase their lead but it was Glen who finished the half well, Mark O’Donnell and Sean Gribbin reducing the gap to just two points. Indeed glen had two more chances, one a ‘45’ to level matters at the break but Coleraine did go in two to the good 2-4 to 1-5.

Within a minute of the restart Eoghan Rua had a real goal chance but Colm McGoldrick’s effort went well wide of the far post, he would make up for that missed chance later. The sides then exchanged two points each before midfielder Emmett Bradley reducing the gap to just one ten minutes into the half, 2-6 to 1-8 the score. At that stage it seemed the league points were very much up for grabs. The midfield battle was fairly even with Glen’s Emmett and Johnnie Bradley against Eoghan Rua’s Niall Holly and Barry McGoldrick, both sets of midfielders having had their periods of dominance.

There were a number of fine high catches throughout in that sector. However the final quarter proved to be virtually one way traffic as the home side seem to run out of steam with Eoghan Rua powering their way to victory out outscoring Glen 1-7 to 0-1. Four points in a row had Coleraine five ahead with seven minutes left but an Emmett Bradley point from a free reduced the gap to four five minutes from the end.

Again Glen threatened to make it difficult for Coleraine but following a fine Niall Holly point Kieran Lagan made the most of a poor kick out by goalkeeper Gerard McKenna to place Colm McGoldrick for his second and Eoghan Rua’s third goal. That was effectively the game over Ciaran McGoldrick’s two points in added time embellishing a hard earned win for Coleaine.

Eoghan Rua team: Ryan McGeough; Ciaran Lenehan, Ciaran Mullan, Ciaran Lagan; Mark McTaggart, Sean Leo McGoldrick, Sean Paul Henry; Niall Holly, Barry McGoldrick; Colm Hanlon, Richard Carey, Kieran Lagan; Ciaran McGoldrick, Colm McGoldrick, Stephen Coyles.

Substitutes used: Conor Carey for S Coyles (45), Kevin Mullan for Colm McGoldrick (58), Liam Frizelle for B McGoldrick (58)

Eoghan Rua scorers: Colm McGoldrick (2-1), Ciaran McGoldrick (1-5, 1-0 pen, 0-2 frees), Richard Carey (0-2), Kieran Lagan, Colm Hanlon, Conor Carey, Niall Holly (0-1) each.

Glen: Gerard McKenna; Brendan O’Kane, Kevin Bryson, Declan Brolly; Odhran Bradley, John McCamley, Joe Bradley; Johnnie Bradley, Emmett Bradley; Michael Warnock, Sean Gribbin, Connlan Bradley; Mark O’Donnell, Donal Leahy, Ryan Winton.

Substitutes used: Damian Maguire for Connlan Bradley (44), Thomas McCloy for K Bryson (49), Aidan McGrath for M O’Donnell (52), C Bradley for A McGrath (59)

Glen scorers: Ryan Winton (1-1), Mark O’Donnell (0-3), Emmett Bradley (0-3, 0-1 ‘45’, 0-1 free), Sean Gribbin, Donal Leahy (0-1) each.

Meanwhile, Eoghan Rua’s senior hurlers got their North Antrim Junior league campaign off to a good start with a solid 3-13 to 0-11 victory over Cushendall last week. This was a most entertaining game with both sides playing their part. Cushendall took an early 0-4 to nil lead before the home side eventually got into their stride. Three Colm McGoldrick points helped Eoghan Rua stay in contention as they trailed 0-6 to 0-4 by the 23rd minute, Conor Carey adding the Coleraine side’s fourth point.

In the 25th minute the same tow players combined for McGoldrick to drill to the net to put Eoghan Rua ahead for the first time. However, three points in the closing minutes of the half sent Cushendall in 0-9 to 1-5 up at the break. The sides traded points early in the second half before the ‘Dall reclaimed the lead five minutes in.

Eoghan Rua then hit a purple patch of scoring which started with a Conor Carey goal, Carey and Liam Frizelle added fine points before Costas Papachristopoulos hit a ground shot to the net midway through the half to put Coleraine 3-8 to 0-10 ahead. Coleraine went on to dominate the final quarter as they outscored Cushendall 0-5 to 0-1 for a fine eleven point victory.

Eoghan Rua scorers: Conor Carey (1-5), Colm McGoldrick (1-3), Costas Papachristopoulos (1-0), Liam Frizelle (0-2), Anton Rafferty (0-2 frees).

Meanwhile Eoghan Rua’s footballers went down to a heavy defeat away to Banagher in the first round of North Derry’s premier knock-out competition the 13-aside Dr Kerlin Cup. After taking an early two point lead, Kieran Lagan and Charlie Boyle scoring inside the opening five minutes, almost fifty minutes. Meanwhile Banagher had scored fourteen points in a row. Two late points from Stephen Coyles and Ciaran McGoldrick did little to affect the outcome, Banagher winning 0-14 to 0-4.