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Draperstown Under 16's
Tobermore U16 1-5 Draperstown U16
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Tobermore U16 1-5 Draperstown U16

Draperstown continued their fine form with a deserving and easy victory over local rivals, even without several key figures due to other sporting commitments.

Straight from the off the visitors had Tobermore on the back foot, with relentless attack after attack, which the Tobermore defence were lucky to deal with on a few occasions. The were completely dominated in midfield and anytime they managed to get the ball through to their strikers, the ball was quickly and efficiently played out by the very capable Draperstown back line.

It therefore came as no surprise when they took the lead. A through ball which was most certainly going to end up with a goal was stopped by a reckless challenge by a Tobermore defender on the edge of the box. Debutant McClenaghan then stepped up and hit a wicked shot, which the keeper could only palm out to the on-coming Draperstown duo of Higgins and Bradley, both of which could have finished it, but it was Bradley who managed to get the final touch.

But Draperstown did not slacken off, and McKillion and Warnock set up a few more chances for their forward line, who were unlucky on a few occasions not to double the lead. However, a few minutes later and McClenaghan did get the second goal. A brilliant through ball by Brady was finished with aplomb by the striker.

The rest of the half went much the same way, with Taggart and Shaw impressing in defence, though they had little to do. Safe Hands McConnell also got to show how he earned his nickname, by saving tremendously from point blank range from the one chance Tobermore did manage to create in the half.

Draperstown made one change at half time, with Brady making way for Quinn. This did not disrupt the team, and they went from strength to strength in the second half, over-powering the opposition completely. They then got their third goal of the game, with McClenaghan getting his second after a brief scramble in the Tobermore box.

Tobermore frustrations and lack of discipline then started to show, with their big striker first getting ticked for a two footed lunge at the impressive Quinn, then two minutes later receiving a yellow card for what was surely a red card offence, when he thuggishly studded Shaw in the arm after a great challenge by the big centre back.

This did seem to knock back Draperstown a bit, and Tobermore, against the run of play, got a goal. First an off the ball incident involving a punch thrown by a Tobermore player was ignored, then a blatant handball in the area was also unheeded by the ref, and Tobermore had the easiest of tap ins to grab a goal back.


Their celebrations did not last long however. Kennedy and Kelly came on for Warnock and Bradley, and just a few minutes later Kennedy earned his side a penalty, which he took himself and coolly slotted home, sending the goalkeeper, who had rashly pulled down Kennedy.

It was not over yet however, as another defence splitting pass seen Quinn brought down by the keeper, which yielded the second penalty of the day. This time McClenaghan stepped up and completed his hat trick.

The final few minutes were played at a canter, though McCullagh and Conway never gave the Tobermore attack an inch and Kelly continued to impress. Draperstown now play Cookstown in the final League Cup group match, with a draw being enough to win Draperstown the group, though they will not be giving up their 100% record thus far too easily.

Starting Line-Up (4-4-2): JP McConnell, K McCullagh, O Shaw, G Taggart, C Conway, D Brady, D McKillion, J Higgins, J Warnock, M McClenaghan, G Bradley
Subs: S McGrogan, S Kennedy, A Kelly, J Quinn