Newtown go Down as Harps Respond on Big Day for Club (Oct 2012)

Derrygonnelly 3-15; Newtownbutler 1-06;

(Taken from Impartial Reporter on October 11th)

Newtown will ply their trade in Division Two next season after Derrygonnelly relegated them and in doing so secured their own status in the top flight with a commanding win over the First Fermanaghs on the day that Derrygonnelly officially opened their new facilities.

Mickey Fox's Newtown side have struggled in the league throughout the campaign and Fox is disappointed to see them drop down into the second tier.

"It's very disappointing to go down. When you come into a job you set out looking to win championships and maybe get to a league semi-final but for whatever reason it didn't happen for Newtown this year. We also had a lot of boys missing through injuries and being away and that didn't help us," said Fox.

Sunday's game was one that Derrygonnelly had to win to guarantee that they would stay in Division One next season and they dominated throughout to claim a comfortable victory. Harps manager Brendan Rasdale stated that they were keen to produce a performance on a big day for the club.

"The game was very important but the occasion, the fact that it was opening of our new facilities, helped to focus us. We knew that there would be a big crowd and the last time a large number of those would have seen us was the defeat to Tempo in the championship and we knew we needed to put that right," said Rasdale.

Derrygonnelly were to control things from early on with Ryan Jones and Tiernan Daly dovetailing well at midfield and giving the home side a firm footing in that sector.

And futher up the pitch Kevin Cassidy was orchestrating matters in attack while Paul Ward was proving sharp and elusive, finishing the day with a personal tally of 2-07.

Ward, Jones and Casssidy all rattled over points in the opening spell while the home side also missed a couple of good goal chances.

Newtown did respond with Brendan McBrien and Colum Monahan notching points but Derrygonnelly cemented their dominance on proceedings as half backs Dennis Greene and Stephen Burns combined to put Ward through and he finished to the back of the net as Derrygonnelly went in at the break leading 1-06 to 0-03.

Leigh Jones, Ryan Jones and Ward tagged on further points in the second half as Derrygonnelly opened up a nine point advantage but Newtown hit back with James Connolly finding the back of the net as they cut the deficit back to six.

However, the home side powered ahead again and Garvan McGinley fielded well before slipping in Ward for his second goal while McGinley then turned goalscorer as he flicked an Eamon McHugh centre to the back of net. Ryan Carson and Colum Monahan did bang over points for the away side in the second half but Derrygonnelly were always in control as they eased to victory.