The second round of the FAI Junior Cup kicked off this weekend with NT&DL teams involved in nine games, seven of which saw the local clubs face off against TSDL sides.
Premier division league leaders Nenagh Celtic came away with a 2-0 win from a tricky away tie against Two Mile Borris. Sean Healy got the first goal for Celtic after some good build-up play between Szymon Popiela and Christopher Ryan. Celtic’s second came from Popiela who was hacked down outside the 18 yard box and picked himself up to bend the resulting free kick into the top corner. A place in the next round and a clean sheet making it an enjoyable day out for the Nenagh side.
Killavilla United travelled down to Cahir Park on Sunday afternoon and fell to a disappointing 3-0 defeat against the home side. Villa, who were missing influential top scorer Paul Kirwan for this game, started very well and Shane Moloney had the ball in the Cahir net twice inside the opening 20 minutes but both efforts were unfortunately ruled out for offside. Cahir took the lead from a corner in the first half and hit Villa twice on the break to progress into the next round. Villa will look to bounce back in the Munster Junior cup next Sunday when they travel to Holycross FC.
BT Harps enjoyed an easy passage into the next round with a dominant 9-0 win away to Killenaule Rovers. BT’s goals came courtesy of a hat-trick from the brilliant Stefan Leahy while Eanna McBride got a brace and Martin Harty, Cathal Scully, Ben Stapleton and Jack Kennedy also scored. Strong performances from across the BT squad but Stefan Leahy was the man of the match on the day with goals, assists and tireless work rate causing all sorts of problems for Killenaule.
Penalties were required to separate Borroway Rovers and Cullen-Lattin FC after 110 minutes of football saw the sides tied at a goal apiece. The home side took the lead just before half time but Rovers equalised in style when midway through the second half a 35 yard volley from Seamus Woodlock found the top corner. Borroway keeper Gordon Carey proved the hero in the shootout with two saves following successful attempts from Shane Dunne, Calum O’Connor and Jake Moore. The Thurles side continue their good form with three wins from three across all competitions.
Moneygall FC welcomed Kilsheelan United to Moneygall on Sunday and recorded an excellent 4-2 win after extra time. NT&DL top scorer Joe Callaghan proved the difference once again with all four goals for the home side. Billy McCormack’s side return to league action this weekend and have a chance to move top of Division 1 if they can win away to Sallypark FC.
Portumna Town were the visitors to Clonmel Celtic and fell to a 6-1 defeat, the consolation goal coming from a David Nee penalty, while Ardcroney FC put up a good battle against the visiting Vee Rovers but eventually fell to a 4-0 loss. Rovers are playing very well this season, sitting third in the strong TS&DL Premier division but they found Ardcroney a difficult opposition. The game was scoreless at the break but Vee did manage to put four goals past their hosts in a dominant second half.
There were two all NT&DL clashes in the competition. In the first of those Thurles Town needed extra time to see off a spirited Borrisokane FC. A Christy Burke brace and a Pat Lawlor strike were enough for Town to seal the win while Gordon Harding and David Nevin scored for Borrisokane. Borris are currently enjoying a bit of form in Division 1 and although Paraic Fogarty’s Town proved too strong in the end, they will take confidence from managing to take a strong Premier outfit into extra time.
Holycross FC secured their place in the next round with a 3-0 home win against Rearcross FC. Jo Jo O’Meara scored twice to add to his recent glut of goals and Seanie Comerford also found the net for the home side. Rearcross will have to pick themselves up as they host and in-form Borroway Rovers in the Munster Junior next weekend.
Two games in Division 1 this weekend, the first of which saw Ballymackey FC cause a huge upset with victory over league leaders Shinrone United. Ballymackey went into the halftime break one nil up thanks to a goal from Mark Carey. Shinrone created a number of chances in the second half and were denied a goal when Timmy Fleming saved a penalty after the ever-present Jason McCormack was taken down inside the area. Shinrone also hit the woodwork as they pushed for an equaliser but man of the match Denis Haverty sealed the win for Ballymackey ten minutes from time to open up the Division 1 title race.
In the division’s other game, Cloughjordan FC continued their good run of form with a 4-2 win over Gurtagarry FC. Clough’s goals were scored by the in-form Dean O’Meara, Martin Grace, Bryan Williams and Hasrat Dayan with Gurta replying through Dinny Corcoran and Tom Hassett. Gurta in real trouble now in Division 1, six points from safety, while Cloughjordan continue to climb the table.
In Division 2, Lough Derg moved back to the top of the table with a 6-0 win at home to Silvermines FC. Seamus Monaghan and Kieran Larkin got two goals each with Stephen McCarthy rounding off the scoring for the Killaloe side. In the other games, Moneygall FC B beat Clonmore 3-0 and Holycross B earned a hard fought three points with a 5-2 win away to Clodagh Rangers B.