Loughgall u13s brought their season to a close with a hard fought draw when they made the journey to Ballymnena to play Carniny in the National League.
On a bumpy pitch both teams struggled to find any fluency to their play with the ball being in the air more than the ground for much of the first half. After an even opening 10 minutes Carniny’s winger won a free kick out wide before delivering a perfect cross for their forward to score at the second attempt as Loughgall’s defenders and keeper were unusually slow to react to the danger. The remainder of the first half followed the same pattern with a lot of long balls being played and Loughgall unable to test the opposing keeper despite a couple of excellent deliveries from free kicks by Jack Scott leaving the team trailing at half time.
However Loughgall made a few changes at half time and produced a much improved second half. Sean Quigley was given the task of marking Carniny’s tricky winger, a job which he carried out well and the introduction of David Cochrane added some pace up front. Loughgall’s midfield of Ryan Fearon, Kris Cowan, Jack Scott and Adam Wright were starting to impose themselves on the game and Adam Wright was unfortunate to be called offside when through on goal. After Carniny went close to extending their lead Loughgall broke forward and Jack Scott continued his recent long range scoring run with another 20 yard strike into the bottom corner of the net to bring Loughgall level. With 10 minutes remaining the game opened up with both teams going for the win and Loughgall going close through David Cochrane but eventually the game ended in a 1-1 draw which was probably a fair reflection of the game from 2 committed teams.
This brought Loughgall’s season to a close as they finished mid table in the National League Section A which after a difficult start to the season was a very commendable outcome. The coaches would like to thank all the players and parents for their efforts and commitment during the season.
Team: Sam Monaghan, Mark Palmer, Jac McElveen, Jason Dodds, Cameron Faulkner, Adam Wright, Ryan Fearon, Sam Barrett, Chris Whiteside, Sean Quigley, Jack Scott, David Cochrane
After suffering a heavy defeat against Linfield in their last match, Loughgall u13s returned to form with a decisive 2-0 victory over Glentoran in the National League A Section.
The game began with Loughgall playing into a stiff breeze and the game took 15 minutes to settle after a frantic opening period when both teams worked hard to gain the upper hand but with neither team producing any real fluency or chances. Loughgalls defence of Sean Quigley, Cameron Faulkner, Jason Dodds and Jac McElveen were very impressive during the first half as they comfortably dealt with the Glentoran forwards and reduced the oppositions scoring chances to a couple of hopeful long range efforts. Indeed Loughgall created a couple of half chances in the Glens penalty area but were unable to capitalise on some hesitant defending and Loughgall were pleased to reach half time with the game scoreless.
The second half saw a determined Loughgall team come out and dominate the second half and they were the first to create an opening when Sam Barretts volley was tipped around the post by Glentorans keeper. Loughgall were starting to move the ball around better and create pressure on Glentorans defence and started to force a number of corner kicks. It was from one of these corners that Loughgall took the lead when Kris Cowan and Jack Scott took a short corner while Glentoran were still organising their defence and from the resulting cross Adam Wright smashed an excellent strike into the top corner. After the goal Loughgall continued to push forward but despite a number of goalmouth scrambles they couldn’t find a second goal. As they pushed forward Glentoran caught Loughgall on the break as their forward raced clear only for his effort to be tipped on to the crossbar by Sam Monaghan and then with Glentorans forward looking certain to score from the rebound Sean Quigley somehow managed to heroically block the effort as the ball deflected past the post. This proved to be the Glens last chance and soon Loughgall did double their lead in spectacular fashion as Jack Scott broke free in midfield before firing a stunning strike from 25 yards into the net to send the home supporters into raptures.
Indeed Loughgall almost scored a third when after defending a Glentoran free kick on the edge of the box they broke the length of the pitch as Kris Cowan released Chris Whiteside to outpace the Glens defence only for his effort to be well saved leaving Loughgall victorious by 2 goals to 0.
This was another impressive display from the ever improving team as they continue to move up the table as the season draws to a close.
Team: Sam Monaghan, Mark Palmer, Jac McElveen, Jason Dodds, Cameron Faulkner, Adam Wright, Ryan Fearon, Sam McKew, Sam Barrett, Chris Whiteside, Sean Quigley, Jack Scott, David Cochrane
Loughgall u13s produced a display full of pace and power on Saturday as they defeated Limavady in their latest National League Section A game.
In perfect conditions Loughgall began the game at a high tempo and dominated possession but during the opening 15 minutes they were unable to carve open any clear cut opportunities and too often Loughgall lost their composure and rushed the final pass when well positioned. Only a Jack Scott free kick tested the Limavady keeper in the opening exchanges. However the next 15 minutes were a different story and belonged almost entirely to Chris Whiteside who scored a rapid hat trick. His first came when he raced goalwards from a Mark Palmer pass to rifle a low shot past the keepers near post. Minutes later he doubled Loughgalls lead when his shot looped over the keepers head and he then completed his quick fire hat trick as again his pace proved too much for the Limavady defence to cope with as he rifled the ball into the back of the net from a tight angle. This was Chris’s first hat trick for the club and one he fully deserved. Adam Wright then lobbed the keeper to score Loughgall’s fourth but Limavady were given a lifeline on the stroke of half time as they converted a penalty.
The second half saw Limavady come more into the game and a comeback looked a possibility when they scored a long range free kick but to Loughgall’s credit they didn’t panic as they poured forward and Sam Barrett charged down the keeper’s clearance allowing him to tap home. Sam Barrett then scored another with a close range finish to end Limavady’s resistance. At this stage Loughgall were in complete control typified by superb performances from Sam McKew, Jack Scott, Adam Wright and Sean Quigley in midfield whose power and tackling were too much for Limavady to handle. This was allowing them to play some superb football when moving forward and Jack Scott soon added to the scoreline via a deflected shot before Sam Barrett completed his hat trick. Credit must go to Limavady who continued to try to play football but Jason Dodds in particular thwarted any danger. The final goal probably summed up Loughgall’s display as Jack Scott pressurised the Limavady midfielder into losing possession before Jack himself fired home Loughgalls ninth and final goal.
Overall this was the teams most impressive display of the season with the full squad playing their part but the team now need to display this sort of performance against the top teams in the league.
Team: Sam Monaghan, Mark Palmer, Jac McElveen, Jason Dodds, Cameron Faulkner, Adam Wright, Ryan Fearon, Sam McKew, Sam Barrett, Chris Whiteside, Sean Quigley, Jack Scott