The senior and reserves have had a number of games over the past few weeks. The first of these was away to Aldergrove.
Aldergrove 1-8 Desertmartin 1-8
An understrength Desertmartin travelled to Aldergrove for a friendly fixture, in a game were we dominated possession for most of hour (or 50 minutes), a series of bad misses in front of gaols cost the team victory. The first half was bossed by desertmartin almost entirely and it was no surprise that the team led by 1-4 to 2 points approaching the break points from Paul Kelly 2, Aidan Bradley and Michael McCann and the goal from Johnny McGovern with two pointed frees Aldergrove’s only reply. However a purple patch for the home side capitalising on some poor defensive work saw them hit 1-3 just before the break to lead by a point at half time.
The second half followed much the same pattern as the first with Desertmartin creating numerous chances but not taking them however the Aldergrove keeper was living a charmed life 4 second half points 3 from Adrian McGuigan the other from Michael McCann was enough to merit a draw.
The defense was solid throughout the Midfield struggled to get going whilst up front Michael McCann Paul Kelly and Adrian McGuigan were best
Team and scorers
Liam Bradley, Eugene Murray, Ciaran Higgins, Shane O’Neill, James Breen, Brian McElhennon, Adrian Kelly, Patrick McCann, Johnny McGovern (1-0),M McCann (0-2), Paul Kelly (0-2), J P Higgins, A McGuigan (0-3), Ryan Kidd, Aidan Bradley (0-1)
Man Of The Match Brian McElhennon
Desertmartin 0-11 Slaughtneill 2-9
Next up for the team was a larkin cup game against Slaughtneill. Slaughtneill opened the scoring after 3 minutes from a free Jimmy McElhennon replied after 5 minutes with Desertmartins first point, a minute later we were in front when Barry McEldowney fired over. The lead was short lived however as Slaughneill broke and their corner forward got on the end of a through ball to fire the opening goal. Michael McCann then cut their lead to a point with the martins 3rd point. Slaughtenill stretched the lead again with points in the 14th and 16th minutes Barry McEldowney cut the lead with his second point back came Slaughtneill with another point before a scoring drought of 10 minutes was broken when Slaughtneill stretched their lead to 4 points, on the stroke of Half Time Barry McEldowney cut the lead again with his 3rd score.
Half time score Desertmartin 0-5 Slaughneill 1-5.
Despite trailing at the break the team were far from despondant as they knew quite a few chances were spurned and the score could and should have been closer.
Jiimmy McElhennon had the first score of the second half after a period of Desertmartin pressure. It was a poor return as a number of gilt edge chances were missed. Slaughtneill replied almost immediately with another point again Jimmy Mcelhennon cut the defecit only for Slaughtneill to take what looked like an unassailable lead with two further points with about 12 minutes left. Desertmartin showed some real fight however points from Johnny McGovern and Ryan Kidd reduced the defecit to two Points Gerard Murray then out fielded the full back but his shot was saved by the slaughtneill keeper Enda McGuckan following up fired over. Enda McGuckin then turned his marker inside out to fire the equaliser.
Inexplicably Desertmartin then gave possession away twice one of which allowed Slaughtneill to take the lead again. In the last minute a harsh looking penalty award allowed Slaughtneill to gain a 4 point victory.
In defence there were sound games from Eugene Murray, Eamon McBride, Ciaran Higgins in the half backs James Breen and Adrian Kelly did well Mickey McCann and Jimmy McElhennon worked tirelessly Barry McEldowney and Cormac McGuckan showed well in the full forward line. 17 year old Enda McGuckan making his first competitive senior debut also gave glimpses of his potential.
Team and Scorers L Bradley, E Murray, E McBride, C Higgins, J Breen, B McElhennon, A Kelly, J MCGovern (0-1), P McCann, G Kidd, J McElhennon (0-3),
M McCann (0-1), C McGuckan, B McEldowney (0-3), J P Higgins
Subs G Murray, R Kidd (0-1), P Kidd, E McGuckan (0-2)
Man Of The Match Patrick McCann
Desertmartin 2-21 Aldergrove 0-6
Next up for the team was a return game against Aldergrove under lights at hallow park on Wednesday night. This turned out to be a real mismatch as Desertmartin Stanped their authority on the game early on and never lifted their foot of the pedal after that. The first 10 minutes gave no indication of what was to come as Desertmartin looked very lethargic during this spell and only led by 2 points to 1. the team then began to put some moves together and added 2-7 to their opening 2 points aldergroves only reply was a further point to leave the home side leading by 2-9 to 0-2 at half time. The second half was much the same as the first with desertmatin adding 12 points to 4 for Aldergrove. Unfortunately nothing was gained from this game as the team, totally lost their shape during the second half with everyone trying to get in on the scoring act.
Team and scorers
L Bradley, E Murray, P Kidd, S O’Neill,
J Breen, P McCann(0-2), A Kelly, M McCann,
J McGovern, C McGuckan (0-2), J McElhennon(0-5),
B McEldowney (1-3), A McGuigan(1-7)
Subs E McGuckan (0-2), P Kelly, G Kidd, G Murray
Man Of The Match Adrian McGuigan
Desertmartin 3-7 Moneyglass 2-10
Sunday 26th saw two games at longfield with the reserves first up against a strong Moneyglass 15. with a number of players not fielding the management were forced to use players from the senior side to make up the fifteen. Moneyglass started brightly and hit 3 early points before desertmartin started to find their feet points from Aidan Bradley 2 and Enda mcGuckan brought the teams level after 10 minutes. Moneyglass were still looking dangerous and they took the lead again when their full forward fired to the net. Desertmartin’s response however was quick as Aidan Bradley fired to the net quickly followed by a second goal from Gerard Murray. Moneyglass hit back with 3 further points but an Aidan Bradley point ensured the home side led at the break by 2-4 to 1-6.
A 1 point lead did not look to be enough having to face the breeze in the second half but they got off to the best possible start with a Rory Murray point early in the second half. Moneyglass hit back however and three points on the trot allowed them to lead by a point. Some dreadful shooting by both sides meant the score was not added to for a while Moneglass then looked to have hit the crucial score when they goaled to lead by 4. points from Ryan Kidd and Jimmy McElhennon were folloed by a great gaol from Enda McGuckan to leave Desertmartin in front by a point. Moneyglass replied with a point to leave the scores tied at the end.
In defence Anthony Bradley had a fine game at corner back, Eugene Murray had a great game when moved onto Antrim player Kevin Brady at midfield Jippy and Rory held their own for most of the game up front Aidan Bradley, Gerard Murray and Enda McGuckan were a threat throughout
Man Of The match however was Barry Higgins who brought of two cracking saves at crucial stages of the game in the second half.
Team and scorers
B Higgins, Anthony Bradley, E Hegarty, C Higgins, J Breen, C Higgins, E Murray, J P Higgins, R Murray (0-1), E McGuckan (1-1), R Kidd (0-1), Aidan Bradley (1-3),
M Kelly, G Murray (1-0), D Hegarty
Subs G Kidd, P Kidd, B McElhennon, J McElhennon (0-1), M McCann,
Desertmatin 3-13 Randalstown 1-9
The second game saw the seniors entertain Randalstown. Despite the final scoreline the players will know after this game that there is still an awful lot of work to be done before the beginning of the league. On the plus side a return of 3-13 is a good score, the return of Rory Murray from Sigerson duty is also a plus and with a month until the league begins there is time to work on all aspects of the team. Playing with the breeze in the first half the team did not really capitalize on this with an over insistance on trying to work everything to the 14 yard line. Despite the mistakes the team led at the break 1-6 to 0-5 with the scores coming from Barry McEldowney 1-2, P Kidd 0-1, M McCann 0-1 and J McElhennon 0-1.
The second half began with Randalstown cutting the defecit immediately with a point during the opening exchanges of the second half Desertmatin gave away possession on 4 or 5 occasions with some poor passing fortunately these lapses weren’t punished and the team began to play some good football points from Jimmy McElhennon, Cormac McGuckan and J P Higgins were followed by a Michael McCann goal although Randalstown did reply with a goal Desertmartin finished the game strongest with further points from substitutes Gerard Murray, Enda McGuckan and Aidan Bradley 2 and a goal from Aidan Bradley to run out convincing winners at the finish.
Liam Bradley once again had a solid game in goals, Eugene Murray having played all of the first game had a good first half on the other wing Kieran Higgins playing his first senior game of the year had a good game. The half back trio played soundly up front Jimmy and Mickey featured prominently with J P Higgins also getting more involved. Barry and Cormac also played well
Team and Scorers
L Bradley, E Murray, E McBride, C Higgins, J Breen, B McElhennon, C Higgins,
J McGovern, P Kidd, M McCann, J McElhennon, J P Higgins, A McGuigan, B McEldowney, C McGuckin
Subs R Murray, R Kidd, E McGuckan, G Murray, A Bradley
Scorers B McEldowney 1-2, A Bradley 1-2, M McCann 1-1, J McElhennon 0-3, P Kidd 0-1,C McGuckin 0-1, G Murray 0-1, E McGuckin 0-1, J P Higgins 0-1
Man Of The Match Eamon McBride solid game at Full Back