There were four NT&DL ties in the first round of the Munster Junior Cup this weekend.
Premier division league leaders Nenagh Celtic travelled to Templemore to take on BT Harps on Sunday and came away with a 2-1 win. Celtic started well and could have gone in front with a couple of chances but it was Harps, through a Lorcan Roche finish, who took a one nil lead into the break. Michael Hynes, making his first appearance this season, got his head on a corner to equalise for Celtic midway through the second half. Five minutes later Jimmy Hynes was brought down inside the box and Séan Healy converted the resulting penalty to secure the win for the Nenagh side. A good day out for Celtic, securing a confidence boosting away win over their title rivals and a deserved place in the next round of the MJC.
On Saturday evening Rearcross FC played Borroway Rovers under the floodlights in Rearcross and the away side progressed to the next round on a 2-0 score-line. Rovers scored midway through each half, both goals coming from striker Calum O’Connor, but Rearcross will feel they left this game behind them after failing to convert a series of chances in the game. Michael O’Gorman was largely unplayable in this game, running the Borroway defence ragged and he did everything bar put the ball in the net. Another win for Borroway to continue their good run of results while Rearcross will be hoping to replicate their form here, albeit with some more ruthlessness in front of goal.
Killavilla United travelled down to Holycross FC on Sunday and the Roscrea side required penalties to progress to the next round following a 3-3 draw after extra time. Holycross went ahead after 20 minutes with a David Keogh strike but Killavilla took the lead in a five minute spell after half time, scoring twice through Joe Moloney and Craig Ryan. Holycross re-took the lead with a Jimmy King penalty and a Johnny King strike before Joe Moloney rescued the tie for Villa, with his second of the day five minutes from time. There were no further goals in extra time and Villa eventually progressed to the next round, winning the shoot-out 3-1.
Thurles Town exited the MJC on Sunday following a 3-2 loss to Portumna Town FC after extra time. Thurles started well and took a lead after half an hour with two goals from Pa Lawlor. Town fought back and scored once through Ciaran Haugh before Sean O’Meara equalised at the death. Five minutes into extra time Portumna completed the turnaround when Ryan Hanrahan scored what proved to be the winning strike.
This weekend also saw the start of Tipperary Cup with five first round ties taking place across the weekend.
On Saturday evening Gurtagarry FC fell to a 5-3 home loss to Clodagh Rangers FC. The Drombane side started the game very well, taking a 3-1 lead into the break with a brace from John Ryan and a goal from Matty Stakelum, Dinny Corcoran got the reply for Gurtagarry. The second half started with more of the same as John Ryan completed his hat-trick before Gurta briefly got themselves back into the game with goals from Paddy O’Rourke and Liam Ryan. Rangers showed their class however to seal the win with a strike from Aidan Slattery ten minutes from time.
Silvermines FC secured their place in the next round with a 2-0 home win against Birdhill FC, the goals coming from TJ Timmons and Colin O’Brien.
Borrisokane FC progressed with a 3-1 win at the expense of first division rivals Ardcroney FC. Conor Gavin, Lou Mooney and Jack Mahoney scored for Borris while Ben Chadwick got the consolation for Ardcroney.
Ballymackey FC were made to work for their victory over Moneygall FC B before eventually progressing with a 5-3 extra time win. Aiden White scored twice for Ballymackey with Denis Haverty, Gary Kevin and Gary McCarthy also finding the net. The Moneygall goals came from a Martin Cussen brace and a solo strike from Colm McGrath.
In the other game in the Tipperary Cup, Clodagh Rangers B travelled to Clonmore United and came away with a comfortable 3-0 win.
In the only game in Division 1 this weekend, Moneygall FC moved top of the table with a narrow 1-0 win over Sallypark FC. Sally keeper Damien Corcoran saved a spot kick from the in-form Joe Callaghan midway through the first half. It was a tight game after this with chances for both sides but the deadlock was broken twenty minutes from time when a 25 yard wonder strike from Paudie Williams found the top corner.
In Division 2, Lough Derg fell to a 2-1 home loss to Templetuohy FC. Tony Buston and Brian Canning scoring the goals for the visitors.