Flowers return to summit

Three Flowers Sean Martin shields the ball from Don Bosco's Ciaran Ferry at Brandywell Showgrounds. (1810PG13)
Three Flowers Sean Martin shields the ball from Don Bosco's Ciaran Ferry at Brandywell Showgrounds. (1810PG13)

Don Bosco’s 1

Three Flowers 2

Third placed Don Bosco’s went into this clash intent on closing the gap on the leading two and the game was hotly contested from the outset.

Indeed, it was a physical encounter which swung end-to-end and although Bosco’s had the advantage of having the wind at their backs, Flowers were always dangerous on the counter attack.

And the Coshquin men should have taken the lead when Paul Moore found himself clean through on goal but the striker put his shot wide of the post.

Kevin McCreadie was then denied by an excellent save from Bosco’s keeper, David McGilloway as the sides went in at the interval deadlocked.

In the second half both sides enjoyed chances to take the lead and eventually it was Flowers who broke the deadlock when Calvin Mooney’s free-kick from 30 yards deflected off the keeper and into the net.

Flowers then doubled their advantage shortly afterwards when the Bosco’s keeper misjudged the flight of the ball from a corner and Kevin McCreadie tapped the ball into the net.

It was all Bosco’s after this and they got their reward when Gavin Doherty skipped past three players, played a one-two with Calvin McCallion before finishing neatly into the bottom corner to reduce the arrears with 10 minutes to go.

And controversy reigned on 85 minutes when McCallion burst through on goal before being brought crashing down inside the penalty area by a Flowers defender for what appeared a blatant penalty kick, however, referee, Noel Moore waved play on much to the frustration of the Bosco’s management and players.

Trojans 1

Porter’s 2

This contest began at a frantic pace swinging from end to end, however, Porter’s were the first to settle and created a fantastic chance to open the scoring when Steven Whoriskey dispossessed the Trojans’ full-back before firing narrowly over.

The breakthrough arrived moments later when Gary Dunne played Maurice Curtis through on goal and, in a race for possession with the Trojans keeper, the Porter’s man was upended and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Curtis then dusted himself down to send the keeper the wrong way, giving his side the lead.

Trojans came back strongly and had three great chances to score, however, they were denied by a goalline clearance from Curtis and twice by brilliant saves from Smyth in the Porter’s goal.

Porter’s luck didn’t last long, however, as Trojans drew level in the 35th minute when Darren McFadden headed into the net from a great delivery from the Trojans’ number eight.

Porter’s responded and during a great 10 minute spell the Foyle Street men penned Trojans back and a great ball from Curtis put Whoriskey in one-on-one with the keeper. Whoriskey knocked the ball past the keeper and was brought down giving the referee no option but to produce the red card.

Porter’s, aided with their numerical advantage, began to take control and went ahead when another great delivery from Curtis was met by Gareth Wright who headed powerfully past the stand-in keeper.

Trojans were then reduced to nine men when their striker received his second yellow.

Porter’s unsurprisingly bossed the game from here on and missed numerous chances to increase their advantage.

In the end Porter’s held on for their victory but they know it will be a tougher task when the teams meet next week in the Terry Kelly Cup.

Celtic Swifts 2

Brandywell Harps 2

Swifts found the net after five minutes with a well worked goal. Emmett Boyle picked the ball up on the right, skipped past his man and drilled the ball hard and low towards Gerry McClintock who made no mistake.

Ten minutes later Swifts doubled their tally with another excellent finish. Dee Power latched onto the ball in midfield, jinked his way past three men before finishing off with a sublime chip over the on-rushing keeper.

Just before half-time Brandywell reduced the deficit when poor defending from Swifts allowed James Melly to stab the ball home.

Swifts started slowly in the second half and Matt Harkin took advantage when drilling the ball past the Swifts’ keeper.

Swifts felt aggrieved when having claims for a penalty turned down by referee, Martin Dunne and that proved to be the final chance of the game as both sides settled for a share of the spoils.

Lisahally 3

Downey’s 3

Downey’s dominated the early stages with Lisahally keeper, McGrory making several good saves.

Lisahally took the lead when Pete Doherty powered the ball in at the near post.

Downey’s started the second half well with Curran getting his side back on level terms. Aidy O’Kane cooly finished to put Lisahally 2-1 up although Downey’s quickly made it 2-2.

Curran then put Downey’s back in the lead, however, with the last kick of the game Murray scored from a Kirk cross to provide Lisahally with a well earned draw.