posted 18 Nov 2017, 11:55 by Derrygonnelly Harps   [ updated 18 Nov 2017, 11:59 ]

Crossmaglen 1-8

Harps 0-6


So the Under 16 lads’ run came to an end to today after a loss against a Crossmaglen team which just had a wee bit too much for our boys on the day. We were hard-working and competitive, and they had to work hard for their result, but we were never able to get a lead to hold onto and play the counter-attack as we did last week against Gaoth Dobhair. We just never caught fire in the same way as last week. In truth, the step up in opponents is a factor in things like that too. Cross were just as hardworking as us, and had a few very good contributions all over the pitch. 

That said, it has been a super championship campaign, through Fermanagh and into the Ulster Club, and the experience gained should be very significant for these players. They definitely proved themselves able to cope with the contests and intensity of such games, and they have gained a bit of know how that should definitely stand to them in the future. A number of them are improving all the time, and have come on a lot in twelve months. The question from last week’s game in particular will stand the test of time: How and why did we win that game?

The half time score today was 1-3 to 0-3, with our scores coming from Rian McGovern and Conor Burns with two excellent scores from play, and Rian adding a free towards the end of the half. We had conceded a slippy oul goal early on, but managed to establish a reasonable foothold in the contest.

Into the second half, we had plenty of perspiration, but maybe not quite the inspiration we needed. If I were to point out one significant difference from last week’s play, it would be that we didn’t quite get the support coming on the shoulder of the man in possession in a way that might have got us into scoring range. Yet Crossmaglen found it difficult to build up much of a total either, with a few wides and some excellent defending by Aaron Jones and Ronan McHugh in particular, well supported by Rhys Campbell and Brandon Curry. Gareth McGovern, with a good left foot strike, Rian with a good free and Brandon in the last minute, allowed us to double our tally on the day. It has to be said also that Rian had a really fine game, showing immense workrate from our own fourteen yard line to the other end, for the whole game – great leadership, and not a word out of him to the ref or anyone else. He was too busy looking for the next bit of work to be done - excellent. We might have squeezed a wee bit more out of the second half, but it just didn’t happen a few times.

Overall, we can definitely hold our head up high. Thanks very much lads for giving us a great season, and to our excellent, committed team coaches thank you very much Anthony, Kevin and Aidy for doing a brilliant job as well. Harps abu!