BJ Banda scored four as Letterkenny Rovers made light work of Swilly Rovers to out on their own at the top of the Four Lanterns Ulster Senior League.
Letterkenny Rovers 9 Swilly Rovers 0
By Chris McNulty at the Aura Leisure Centre
As the hailstones pelted down on the Aura Leisure Centre, it rained goals, too, as Eamonn McConigley’s Letterkeny cantered to a routine win.
Letterkenny were 4-0 up by the break and when Banda completed his own scoring with a brace inside seven minutes of the re-start, Swilly’s soul had long since been ripped from their shirts.
Swilly played an hour with ten men after the dismissal of midfielder David Fisher. By that stage, though, Swilly were already three in arrears.
Former Finn Harps striker Banda netted four, Lee Toland cracked in two free kicks, while Declan Sharkey, Ryan Lonergan and Kevin McGrath all got in on the act.
Rovers, with the likes of Rory Kelly and Jonny Bonner not in the line-up, began with real purpose.
McGrath whizzed past the post before McGrath had a shot blocked and they were closer still when, from a brilliant Toland cross, Sharkey clipped off a post.
At 0-0, Swilly had a golden chance to break the deadlock, but Fisher shot wide after an error in the home rearguard.
Letterkenny ‘keeper Blake Forkan repelled a drive from Swilly player-manager Marty McDaid and it was as good as it got for the Ramelton side.
Banda riffled in from 20 yards for a superb opener and, almost instantly, they doubled the lead. Sharkey wonderfully controlled a pass by Conor Tourish and his finish gave Jamie Blaney no chance.
Banda won a free and Toland converted to make it 3-0 before a frustrated Fisher was given his marching orders for chopping down Lonergan.
Banda, in the closing seconds of the opening half, had Letterkenny 4-0 in front at the interval.
Banda nodded in from McGrath’s inch-perfect delivery for his hat-trick and a far-post effort, crashed into the roof of the net, made it 6-0.
Toland’s low free found the bottom corner and Lonergan wrong-footed Blaney before the rout was completed as McGrath skipped in to convert.
Letterkenny Rovers: Blake Forkan, Ryan McConnell, Conor Tourish, Lee Toland, Ryan Lonergan, Chris Malseed, Christy Connaghan, Kevin McGrath, Conor Duggan, Declan Sharkey, BJ Banda. Subs: Luke Nelis for Tourish (half-time), Darren McElwaine for Banda (58), Jonny Bonner for Malseed (70).
Swilly Rovers: Jamie Blaney, Matthew McLaughlin, Jack McCauley, Shay Durning, Tony Gallagher, Liam Cullen, Ryan McDaid, David Fisher, Marty McDaid, Eoin Logue, Shaun Crossan. Subs: Oran Dunworth for Cullen (68), Michael Murray for McLaughlin (70), Cormac Toland for R.McDaid (76).
Referee: Marty McGarrigle.Tags: