An under strength Carryduff played an erratic game on Thursday evening last and will look back wondering how they left a valuable league point in Drumnaquoile. Five points down at half time Carryduff had an eight point turnaround to lead by three points with only two minutes left in the game. Lack of concentration and discipline allowed a determined St. John’s to crack off three points in the final two minutes of the game to earn themselves a herd-fought draw.
The sides had traded points in the opening minutes of the game. Michael McGrath scored for the visitors from the throw-in but St. John’s espoused quickly with a point from Martin Keenan in
the second minute. Owen McCabe added Carryduff’s second score in the second minute.
St. John’s then enjoyed an undisputed period of dominance with points from John Clarke (5th) and Carryduff keeper Mark Hynds deflecting Erin Moag’s piled river over the crossbar.
St Johns nad further scores from Chris McKay (free, 12th), Clarke (14th) and Daniel McKay (17th) as Carryduff laboured to make any impression in the game.
Conor McCullough’s eighteenth minute point rallied Carryduff but St. John’s kept the scoreboard ticking over as Ryan Flanagan pointed twenty one minutes in. Points from Peter Lavery (25th) and Nicky Tarkington (26th) brought Carryduff to within two points but a goal from Chris McKay in the 27th minute put five points between the teams. In the last of the first half action Carryduff’s Sean McGonigle was unlucky, striking the St. John’s woodwork.
St John’s led 1-07 to 0-05 at the break.
Chris McKay extended that lead converting a free in the first minute of the second half but Carryduff rallied with a penalty goal from Neill McGowan (35th) and points from play from Shea Reilly (38th) and Peter Lavery (39th).The influential McKay converted two frees for St. John’s (42nd and 43rd) and Joe Milligan pointing from play (44th) but Carryduff rallied with scores from McCullough (43rd), McGowan (46th) and substitute Ronan Beatty (47th) bringing Carryduff back into the game.
A converted free (Turkington, 49th) leveled the game and Carryduff pressed on with points from McCabe(51st), McGonigle (52nd) and Beatty (55th) but that old adage “it ain’t over ‘til it’s over” rang true as Carryduff failed to finish out the last few minutes and, instead of pressing St. John’s further, allowed the home side to rally and nail three points in the last two minutes as McKay (58th and 59th) and foraging corner back Jonathan Addis (60th) pressed forward to point from play to level the game.
The Carryduff panel and supporters were left to scratch their heads and wonder how they managed to let an eight point turnaround slip into a three point ‘catch-up’ that deprived them of the two league points.
The Carryduff team was;- Mark Hynds, Seamus McCann, Conor McFlynn, Gareth Henderson, Conor McCulough, Josh Connery, Shea Reilly, Owen McCabe, Jonny Henry, Conor Rooney, Sean McGonigle, Neill McGowan, Michael McGrath, Peter Lavery, Nicholas Tarkington.
Substitutes:- Ronan Beatty (for C Rooney, 40), Ronan McLaughlin (for S Reilly, 45)
The St. John’s team was :- Jamie McKevitt, Jonathan Addis, Harry McMullan, Mark Grant, Hugh Flanagan, Conor Flanagan, Joe Milligan, Daniel McKay, Ryan Gibney, Joe Savage, Erin Moab, Ryan Flanagan, Martin Keenan, John Clarke, Chris McKay.
Referee: Shane Lowey