LISNAGARVEY FOURTHS 2 SOUTH ANTRIM THIRDS 0
GARVEY Fourths beat local rivals South Antrim Thirds 2-0 in the early game at Comber Road.
The Fourths were slow to start and found the crowded South Antrim defensive area difficult to penetrate. Alex Nye created the best chance of the first half when he attacked the South left hand side, drove into the circle and laid off an excellent square pass but the chance was lost after some good work by the South sweeper.
Stephen Doherty also went close with a spectacular deflection from the top of the circle. Garvey and South both continued to put several crosses in front of goal but neither team were able to find the vital touch in the circle and the match remained scoreless at the interval.
Garvey lifted their tempo as the second half began and dominated the remainder of the game. South were being forced to play long balls in an attempt to clear the defensive pressure. Garvey also started to win a succession of corners and create chances from open play and it seemed only a matter of time before the stubborn South defence would be breached.
When the goal came early in the second period it was hotly disputed by the South defence. An excellent initial save from the South post man on a short corner, bounced out to the side of the circle where Peter Dobbin’s reverse stick effort ballooned in the air to the top of the circle. Mark Murray had time to take the ball down and fire it past the stranded South keeper. After a lengthy discussion regarding whether or not a Garvey player has “swung and missed” the goal was awarded with the Garvey players confident that it was the right decision. South had one excellent chance to level the game five minutes later when a through ball found Johnny Sykes clear in the circle with only the keeper to beat but he wasn’t able to take the chance and the Garvey defence managed to recover. The result was effectively sealed when Garvey scored their second goal through the impressive Matthew Gleave. A short corner variation was squared by Murray to Gleave just left of the penalty spot and he made no mistake with a calm finish. South stuck to their task for the remaining minutes but Garvey closed out the match and looked the more likely side to score with the clock ticking down.
This was another excellent result for the Fourths and keeps them very well placed in the league. Thanks to Sean Murray and Eric Cunningham for umpiring what at times was a feisty game.