O'Connells pushed hard by Kilkerley
Division 2 Football League: O'Connells 2-16 Kilkerley Emmets 1-15
O'Connells picked up two more league points when they had a four-point victory over Kilkerley in The Grove on Saturday evening but had to fight all the way to injury time to secure it.
Robert Quigley opened the scoring with a point for the home side but Shane Lennon equalised a minute later with a free for the visitors. Points from Conor Culligan and Niall Conlon pushed the Bellingham side in front again. Ciaran McGlynn reduced the lead to one with a point but scores from Andrew Sharkey and Sean Cairns left the score 0-5 to 0-2 after 15 minutes.
Ultan McEneaney cut the lead to two with a point but a brace from Conlon one of which was a free increased his teams lead to four. The sides shared the next two points from Quigley and Tadhg McEneaney and the latter pointed a free to leave three between the teams after 25 minutes. They were level a minute later when McGlynn found Ciaran Murtagh and he shot low to the corner of the net. Each side landed frees from Quigley and Lennon to leave honours even at the break 0-9 to 1-6.
The same two men got the opening points of the second half while another point from Quigley and a free from Ultan McEneaney maintained the status quo. The Bellingham side got their first goal of the game on their next attack after a Cian Doyle ball across the goal was punched clear but fell to Jackie Agnew and he fired his shot low to the opposite corner of the net to leave the score 1-11 to 1-8 after 40 minutes.
However, the next ten minutes belonged to the visitors as points from Sean Hand, Cathal Bellew and substitute Rian Hand returned the game to a draw and Sean Hand put his team in front with a point with just ten minutes to go. Conor McGill got the equaliser for the home side and Quigley put them ahead 1-13 to 1-12, but three unanswered points from Rian Hand and a brace of frees from Lennon put the Emmets two in front with just two minutes to go.
A brace of frees from Conlon and Quigley and the teams were level again going into injury time. From the kick-out Stuart Osbourne won the ball and found Doyle and he passed to the on running Agnew who side stepped his man a shot to the net for his and his team's second goal. With the game now in the fourth minute of injury time Quigley got the last point of the night from a free to seal a hard-fought victory of O'Connells that keeps them joint top of the Division 2 table.
O'CONNELLS: Stuart Reynolds; Salem Rifaie, Conor Byrne, Emmet Byrne; Stuart Osbourne, Jackie Agnew 2-0, Keith Ryan; Sean Cairns 0-1, Ciaran O'Brien; Andrew Sharkey 0-1, Niall Conlon 0-4, Conor McGill 0-1; Robert Quigley 0-8, Dean Stanfield, Conor Culligan 0-1. Subs Cian Doyle for C. Culligan, Sean Meehan for D. Stanfield, Paul McKeever for C. O'Brien.
KILKERLEY EMMETS: Ultan McElroy; Tadhg McKeown, Niall Mulholland, Neil Mulholland; Sean Hand 0-2, Cathal Bellew 0-1, Ciaran Clarke; Conor Quigley, Darren Geoghegan; Sean McElroy, Shane Lennon 0-5, Ciaran Murtagh 1-0; Ultan McEneaney 0-1, Tadhg McEneaney 0-3, Ciaran McGlynn 0-1. Subs Rian Hand 0-2 for D. Geoghegan, Daniel McKeown for U. McEneaney.