Our first team produced a sterling effort to claim a thoroughly deserved three points at Drumad on Saturday afternoon against old foes Strathroy Harps. Despite heavy rain, the pitch was in immaculate condition and lent itself to a great game of following football, both teams determined to get the victory in the only F&W Division 1 fixture on the day. As in previous weeks, we were sharp out of the blocks and dominated the opening half an hour. Ryan Lindsay was the driving force from midfield, really setting the tone early on and setting up several attacks. We had a glorious chance to take the lead, Paul McGrath teed up Paul Elliott who hit a thunderous effort from 20 yards, when the Strathroy keeper could only parry, the ball fell for Kelvin McElroy but with the goal at his mercy he blazed over the bar. Sam Lindsay then had a chance at the back post but just couldn’t get his shot off on time. A McGrath cross then looked over the keeper but agonisingly landed on the roof of the net. We were causing problems from corners, with excellent deliveries from Jordan Cadden providing chances for Stuart Cochrane and Jamie Coalter, and numerous goal mouth scrambles but we just couldn’t force the ball over the line. Cadden then went close with a direct free kick that was deflected just over the bar for another corner. At the other end, Strathroy were awarded a very soft free kick when Coalter was adjudged to have pushed Murphy in the back. Flanagan delivered a dangerous ball, which Boyle duly headed home past Sam McDonald to put the visitors 1-0 up against the run of play. To make it worse, we found ourselves two down just before half time when a moment of quality down the right wing and a bullet header from Murphy doubled Strathroy’s lead. Nevertheless, we came out fighting in the second half, and continued to peg Strathroy back. From another corner, their keeper could only punch the ball clear as far as Cochrane, who smashed in a pile driver right in to the top corner. Buoyed by this we pressed for the equaliser, and after a fine move McGrath teed up Cadden perfectly and the midfielder drilled the ball low and hard underneath the Strathroy keeper. With the game delicately poised, neither team seemed content with a point and the search for a winner really heated up. McDonald force to make a good save low to his right, whilst Lewis Vance headed one off the line from a corner. However, we completed a remarkable comeback following another excellent passage of play. The ball fizzed in to Keelan Flanagan who perfectly laid the ball into McGraths path to coolly slot in to the bottom corner to send the home support in to raptures. Strathroy nearly hit back instantly, Murphy through on goal but McDonald was sharp of his line to save with his legs. A tough game but great character shown to come from behind, and it was richly deserved following much improved performances over the last couple of weeks.
Our reserve team had another frustrating day, this time away to Dergview 3rds. With a mixture of youth and experience, lapses in concentration were to blame for conceding goals. We would get a consolation goal when Lee Farrell set Johnny Brownlee up who slotted home, but unfortunately the game would finish 5-1 to the home side. With Taylor Park also surviving the rain, a credit to our groundsmen, our 3rdteam welcomed Ardstraw. We started well and looked sharp in the first 10 minutes and could have taken the lead however around 12 to 15 minutes in a great effort from the opposition number 10 was tucked away into the bottom right hand corner from outside the box, the keeper had no chance. After that our heads went down and we got bullied in midfield and between silly mistakes and poor marking we conceded another 2 before the half was out. We started well in the 2nd half and after some substitutions and change of positions looked a different side. A nice move and a great finish from Stuart Johnston pulled one back and five minutes later a great finish again this time from Richie Woods got us right back in the game. However poor marking again gave their number 9 a free header at the front post to restore their 2 goal lead, and poor marking in the last few minutes was our downfall again as a free kick into the box was tucked away nicely, with the game finishing 5-2, a disappointing performance to say the least!
This Saturday our 3rds travel to neighbours Lisnaskea, the reserves are at home to Kesh and our 1stteam travel to Dergview Reserves. Our U12s have no game whilst our U10 team will play Ballinamallard on Friday evening at Fisher Park with a 7.30pm KO. This week’s lotto results – numbers drawn were 12, 14, 21 and 22. No winners with the £15 hot-picks going to Margaret Owens, John Jordan and Benny Carson, next week’s jackpot stands at £5,700. Don’t forget our Halloween Party is taking place on Saturday 27thOctober in the Glencar Bar, there will be a mini disco, games and face painting from 6-8pm followed by fun and games for the grown-ups from 8.30pm onwards, please come along and show your support! Check out our new facebook page and website (www.lisbellawunited.co.uk) for up to date information on the goings on at your club!