MARK DOHERTY’S late brace brought Carrowmena Reserves to within touching distance of the Inishowen Engineering Reserve First Division title.
They trailed Carn heading into the closing stages, but sub Doherty’s double secured a vital win for Carrowmena, who need only three more points for the silverware.
Here’s how the Reserve League action panned out:
Inishowen Engineering Reserve Premier Division
QPS Reserves 2 Illies Reserves 0
IN A well-contested contested game Illies had a chance in the opening minute after Joe McDaid burst into the area and his effort was superbly saved low to his right by David Bell.
The Point replied and when Aaron Barr crossed Ultan McCool fired straight at Graham Doherty from six yards when he shoud have done better.
Illies responded and had a candidate for miss of the season came when good work by McDaid on the right saw him cross to Seamus O’Donnell who from point blank range fired straight at Bell.
The Point spurned an equally good opportunity when Josh McLaughlin pounced on an under hit back pass but his driven show was superbly saved by Doherty as the half ended scoreless.
QPS took the lead in the first attack of the second period after a cross from Gavin Grant found McLaughlin and he steered the ball low past Doherty from six yards.
The same two players combined midway through the half but this time Doherty saved Mclaughlin’s effort.
Illies pressed hard in the last ten minutes and when McDaid’s cross found the unmarked Michael Owen Doherty he headed narrowly over when he should have done better.
On 87 minutes Seamus Donaghey advanced and unleashed a rising effort which Bell palmed away diving to his left.
In the final minute the home side sealed the points when a superb outside of the foot pass from Paul Grant released Denim McLaughlin and he finished cooly past Doherty to clinch the points in an entertaining game.
Sea Rovers 3 Cockhill Colts 0
COCKHILL, eager to avenge their cup defeat here two weeks ago, started this game very well and Kevin McDaid was unlucky in the eighth minute when his well struck twenty five yards effort crashed back off the bar.
Ten minutes after this they went close again when an Alan Fletcher header from eight yards was brilliantly saved by Glen Watson.
Somewhat against the run of play Rovers took the lead when a William Logan corner was inadvertently volleyed to the roof of the net by an unfortunate defender for a cracking own goal.
Cockhill replied immediately but McDaid was thwarted this time by another save from Watson. Rovers grabbed another goal with a fine move on 34 minutes after Gary Doherty split the Colts defence with a pass for Keelan Doherty to run clear and round Declan Caldwell to slot home.
On 50 minutes Keelan Doherty broke clear but fired over. Midway through the half Rovers were out of luck when a Gary Collins effort from the edge of the area rebounded off the post.
Rovers made it three nil on 74 minutes when Damien Wards free from all of forty yards went to the roof of the net.
It was all rovers at this stage and Graham Morgan was unlucky when his effort came off the crossbar. Cockhill replied with Fletcher firing over from inside the area.
Rovers substitute Liam Gallagher went close with a well struck effort which just missed the far post.
Buncrana Reserves 1 Aileach Reserves 4
AILEACH started this game on the front foot with Jordan McGeady looking very lively and he went closest to scoring on 12 minutes when he fired high and wide from the right hand edge of the box.
Buncrana began to get a foothold in the game and on 17 minutes a fine through ball from Christy McKinley sent Ronan Hegarty clear but his shot was well saved.
On 22 minutes Aileach almost took the lead when David Ryan’s goal bound effort was hooked clear off the line by John O’loughlin.
The same player again went close ten minutes later when his shot went narrowly wide.
Two minutes before the break Buncrana almost took the lead when following good play down the right wing James Adair laid the ball back to Eoin Murphy and his shot from the edge of the box crashed back off the post but it remained scoreless at the break.
Buncrana had to reorganise at half time after losing the experienced John O’Loughlin and the experience of Aileach began to tell.
Fifteen minutes into the second half Aileach won a free kick and with the ball being spilled Paul McHugh followed in to smash the ball home.
Almost immediately Buncrana were level. Calvin Gallagher did excellently to break into the Aileach box before being upended and he calmly dispatched the penalty himself.
On 64 minutes Aileach found themselves back in front when David Ryan scored directfrom a free kick with a fine strike.
Buncrana battled back strongly and youg Adam Doherty was unlucky to see his effort come back off the post.
Aileach began to dominate the game and could have extended their lead on a couple of occasions before substitute Stephen O’Donnell rounded off a good move to slot home at the back post.
The game was effectively over when on 86 minutes O’Donnell scored his second of the game from close range following confusion in the home defence.
Clonmany Reserves 4 Gleneely Reserves 1
CLONMANY dominated long periods of this game but the visitors had their chances especially from set pieces.
Both Marty Doherty and Brian Devlin fired wide in the opening exchanges before the league leaders broke the deadlock on 12 minutes when Doherty beat two defenders and picked out Brendan Devlin to slot low past Mark Lafferty from fourteen yards. Alan Friel then fired wide before the same player had an effort well saved by Lafferty. Gleneely responded and Nathan McLaughlin found space to unleash an effort which Liam McGonigle was equal to.
Midway through the half Clonmany doubled their lead when Brendan Devlin broke on the right and crossed for Oisin Hession to head home from ten yards.
The Colts responded and spurned a great opportunity after a corner when Cory O’Brien headed wide from five yards.
Clonmany hit back and made it three nil on 38 minutes after Conor Doherty fed Hession on the edge of the area and he sidestepped a defender before drilling a powerful low effort into the bottom corner.
Gleneely had a good spell before the break with Neil Gerard Duffy seeing one effort sail over the bar before having a free kick well gathered by McGonigle and O’Brien heading wide following another corner.
The home side had the first chance of the second half when Marty Doherty fired wide before Brendan Devlin headed a Conor Doherty cross over the bar.At the other end Duffy was off target with a shot from distance.
Colts reduced the deficit on 64 minutes when Duffy fired a free kick into the area for Dean McDaid to head home.
Clonmany responded and when Philip Ivers crossed to John Porter his effort was saved by Lafferty before the home side made it four one late on when Dean Kelly found Brendan Devlin to fire low past Lafferty from fifteen yards.
Moville Reserves 6 Glengad Reserves 3
GLENGAD took the lead on 17 minutes when a long ball over the top released PJ McDaid who fired low past Ryan Coyle.
They then went two up when Eugene McLaughlin pounced on a short back pass to slotpast the stranded Coyle.
Moville got back into the game when Michael McNuaght beat three men on the left and cut the ball back to Finn McLaughlin to slot home minutes before the break. Moville got back on terms on 54 minutes when Colin Doherty knocked the ball up for himself and from a tight angle fired across Michael McLaughlin to the far corner. They took the lead a minute later after McLaughlin fed McNaught who swivelled and fired low to the corner from six yards.
Moville went further ahead when a Kyle Harkin corner found Johnny Radcliffe who fired home from close range.
Minutes later McNaught was upended in the area allowing Kyle Harkin to drill low to the corner.
Moville were reduced to ten men when keeper Coyle was red carded for allegedly handling outside the area and from the free kick Paul McGonagle fired high past substitute Radcliffe to make it five three.
In the last minute the home side broke and McNaught sealed with when he converted the rebound after his first effort was saved by McLaughlin.
Inishowen Engineering Reserve Division One
Carn Reserves 1 Carrowmena Reserves 2
THE League title is Carrowmena’s to lose now after they defeated their nearest rivals and all they need is three points from their final two games to be crowned league champions.
In a close entertaining game there was little goalmouth action in the opening fifteen minutes.
The home side broke the deadlock on 22 minutes when a Dion Diver cross was misjudged by the Carrowmena ‘keeper and landed in the net.
Carn were on top for the remainder of the half but Aaron McCarron, Cade Cooke and Diver all failed to convert decent chances.
At the start of the second half the home side kept pressing but Michael Mclaughlin and Joe McKinney were off target with good efforts.
Carrowmena gradually came into the game and out a lot of pressure on the home side. A fine solo run by Samuel Bredin took him into the area but he fired over.
The introduction of substitute Mark Doherty changed the game for the visitors. On 81 minutes a scramble developed inside the home penalty area before Doherty poked home from close range.
On 88 minutes a good run and cross by Bredin saw the ball break to Doherty who hammered to the roof of the net and claim what looked like an unlikely win and move them within touching distance of claiming their first reserve title.
Rasheney Reserves 2 Culdaff Reserves 1
IN GLORIOUS conditions Rasheney took the lead after the visitors defence failed to clear allowing Matthew McLaughlin to slot home from six yards.
Culdaff responded well to this set back with Niall McLaughlin firing narrowly wide before Aiden Cunningham had a snapshot well saved by Declan Grant.
A Dale Hutchinson corner found brother William but he failed to hit the target when well placed before Cunningham again unleashed an effort which flashed just past the post.
On 19 minutes the home side broke and when John Doherty’s cross was not claimed by Callum Doherty the ball broke nicely for Paul McConalogue to drill into the empty net.
McConalogue went close again on the half hour but this time Doherty gathered well. The opening period of the second half saw defences on top and most of the play in the midfield area.
Midway through the half the visitors got a lifeline when a Niall McLaughlin free kick was deflected past Grant by an unfortunate defender.
Culdaff pressed hard and penned the home side back for the final fifteen minutes.
On 81 minutes a superb free from Niall McLaughlin just grazed the top of the bar.
In the final minutes Niall Gordon burst into the area and when he was tackled the ball fell to Declan McLaughlin whose effort was smothered by Grant.
Aileach Youths 2 Greencastle Reserves 3
AFTER A dull opening period, Aileach had the first chance of note on 20 minutes when Callum Porters cross was directed towards the goal by Matthew Doherty and the ball appeared to have crossed the line before the Greencastle defender cleared but the goal was not given.
Five minutes later the visitors took the lead when a free kick was delivered into the
box and in an attempt to clear the danger, an Aileach defender’s clearance bounced off Dan Diver and ended up in the goal to give Greencastle the lead.
They nearly increased their lead on the half hour when Daniel Rowan forced a great save from Dylan Clarke from a shot from the edge of the box.
Aileach almost equalised immediately when Callum Porters cross was headed narrowly wide by Josh Arbuckle.
The final action of the first half came at the Aileach goal where Clarke comfortably saved a Rowan free kick from twenty yards.
Aileach flew out of the traps at the start of the second half and equalised when a Ryan McDaid free kick was headed goalwards by Benny Hegarty over the out-rushing Greencastle keeper. Callum Porter headed home from close range to be sure. Greencastle came straight back at Aileach and regained the lead when Tom Houston headed home from ten yards following a free kick on the left hand side.
With 10 minutes to go Aileach equalized again when a cross from Matthew Doherty reached Hegarty at the back post and his shot hit the post but rebounded to Derek Gallagher to level the game again.
Within minutes Greencastle edged in front again when Aileach defenders dwelled on the ball and got robbed and John McDermott raced into the box and slotted the ball past Clarke for what turned out to be the winner.Tags: