There were three games this weekend in the preliminary round of the Munster Junior Cup, all of which saw Premier division sides looking to avoid an upset against first division opposition.
On Saturday evening Killavilla United welcomed Borrisokane FC to Villa Park and progressed into the next round with a comfortable 4-1 win. Paul Kirwan was on the mark again for the in-form Villa, scoring twice, while Denis Moloney and Shane Moloney also scored. Brian Donnelly netted the consolation goal for Borrisokane, who will look to re-group ahead of their FAI Junior Cup game against Thurles Town this coming Sunday. Villa travel to Cahir Park in the same competition in what looks like the tie of the round and will hope to carry their brilliant NT&DL form into that game.
Moneygall FC, who have enjoyed an excellent season in Division 1 so far, travelled to Loughtaghalla Park on Sunday but lost out on a 3-0 score-line to Borroway Rovers. Rovers goals came from JJ Gleeson, Tommy McGuire and Dan Corbett and this result, on top of their recent win in the Thurles derby, will fill them with confidence ahead of next weekend’s trip to Cullen-Latten FC.
Portumna Town made it three wins from three for the premier sides with a 4-1 away win over Ardcroney FC. The home side have had a mixed season so far in the first division and victory here was always going to be a big ask. Ardcroney’s task wasn’t helped with the concession of an OG with goals from Town’s Graham Fogarty, Sean Lynch and David Nee adding to their woes. Darragh Buckley got a goal for Ardcroney but this was a comfortable win for Portumna who travel to play the famous Clonmel Celtic next Sunday.
There was only one game in the Premier Division at the weekend with Nenagh Celtic travelling to Holycross FC and emerging with all three points after a hard fought 3-2 win. Celtic twice went ahead, from an OG and a Brian Mitchell strike, only to be pegged back both times by goals from Jojo O’Meara. The Nenagh side eventually sealed the deserved victory with a winner from Alan Kelly. Celtic now sit top of the Premier division and, although Harps and Villa have games in hand, they will have a huge say in the destination of the Premier division title this season.
Two games in Division 1 this weekend, the first of which was an eight goal thriller between Cloughjordan FC and Ballymackey FC. Two Dean O’Meara strikes saw Clough race into an early lead but Ballymackey didn’t lie down and scored two of their own to draw level by half time. The second half saw more of the same, with each side grabbing two more goals to leave the final score 4-4. Ballmackey’s goals came from a brace a piece from Gary Kevin and Paddy Tuohy, while Bryan Williams scored one for Clough to add to a hat-trick from the very impressive Dean O’Meara.
Sallypark FC travelled to the windswept home of Rearcross FC on Sunday and both sides left with a point following a 1-1 draw. The home side took a 1 nil lead into half-time following a James Deegan strike but Sally bounced back in the second half and drew level thanks to a goal from the returning Daniel Keogh.
In Division 2, Silvermines FC caused a huge upset drawing 2-2 away to top of the table BT Harps B. Mines goal-scorers were David Shanahan and Gary Toohey while David Fennell scored twice for Harps. Lough Derg made the most of Harps slip up with a 3-0 win away to Templetuohy FC to move back within a point of the top. Seamus Monaghan scored twice for the Derg while Kieran Larkin also found the net. This result boosts Lough Derg’s title chances while also seriously denting Templetuohy’s chances of promotion.
In the divisions’s other games Clodagh Rangers B ran out 3-2 winners over Clonmore United with goals from Matt Ryan (x2) and Loughlin Ryan, Arra Rovers and Birdhill FC drew 2-2 in Portroe with goals from Cathal O’Brien and John Sheedy for Arra and a Thomas Floyd brace for Birdhill, while Holycross FC B ran out 5-1 winners over Moneygall FC B.
In the U17 League on Friday evening Rearcross FC and Ballymackey FC drew 1-1, that point moving Rearcross to the top of the table at this early stage of the season. On Saturday Holycross FC secured a 3-0 win over Arra Rovers and Killavilla United kept their title challenge on track with a 6-3 win at home to Portumna Town.