Slane share points in hotly-contested match.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

ON Saturday, 11 November the first team travelled to Lisburn to take on Ballymacash Rangers in the league and came home with a point, when it could have been all three.

Ballymacash Rangers...2

Before the match both set of players, management teams and supporters held a minute's silence in remembrance of all those who lost their lives serving their country both home and abroad.

The game got underway at a frightening pace on a very heavy pitch.

Moneyslane were getting the better of the hosts and should have been one up inside two minutes.

A McLean header was headed off the line after the Slane centre half stole a yard on his marker at the back post.

Moneyslane were playing some great football in midfield with Ervine and Beckett getting the better of their counterparts.

The deadlock was broke in the 10th minute when Beckett won possession back in midfield before quickly moving it onto to Ervine.

He picked out Kernaghan on the edge of the area. With the Ballymacash full back closing in the Slane striker nutmegged the defender into the path of Pierce, whose powerful shot could only be partied by the 'keeper where McBurney was quickest to react to put Slane 1-0 up.

With the striker's confidence now up, he tried a volley from all of 30 yards which went wide of the upright and Kernaghan went close from similar range with the 'keeper off his line.

The Moneyslane rearguard of Hainon, McLean, Larmour and Devlin were giving the hosts' strike force very little to go on as they stood strong on a number of occasions.

In a week of controversy surrounding penalty incidents, Moneyslane felt they should have had one in the 15th minute, when an Ervine shot from outside the area appeared to strike Cash defender, Hanna on the arm.

But the referee waved away strong appeals from the Slane players and coaches.

With half an hour gone Ballymacash came into the game a bit more and their number 11 got in behind on a couple of occasions, firing one shot wide of McClurg's upright.

The second time the young 'kee per made a fantastic save pushing the ball onto the foot of the post from six yards out.

The half was drawing to a close when the hosts drew level. A mix up in defence saw their striker, Ferguson make room on the edge of the area, where his deflected shot found the top corner of McClurg's net, 1-1.

This was to be the last action of the half with both teams producing some good football on a difficult pitch, with a couple of cards to show for in a hotlycontested affair.


Half time: Ballymacash Rangers 1-1 Moneyslane.

Moneyslane started the second half similar to the first as they got the better in the opening exchanges. Pierce went close and minutes later he had a pointblank shot well saved by the brave Ballymacash 'keeper.

At the other end, McClurg made a fine save from a Ferguson free kick.

Both teams were leaving everything on the pitch as tackles started to fly in and cautions started to build up as the referee tried to keep a lid on things.

The game was end-to-end stuff and Moneyslane should have went in front on the hour mark, when good football down the right saw right back Hainon somehow miss with the net gaping from four yards out.

With 20 minutes remaining Moneyslane did get their noses back in front on the day, when a great pass from Beckett saw McVitty head down at the back post to McBurney, who made no mistake from six yards out, 1-2.

Ballymacash almost hit back straight away, when their striker got in behind Hainon his shot was fired across goal and just missed McClurg's left upright.

The game was into its final 12 minutes when Ballymacash were handed a lifeline via the penalty spot, McVitty upending the cash midfielder who had come across the Slane man's blind side.

Ferguson stepped up and spotted the ball onto the bottom right hand corner of the Moneyslane net, with McClurg getting a hand to the spot kick, 2-2.

McVitty made way after a solid shift on the right with Brown coming on to give fresh legs.

Moneyslane should have had the game and all three points in the bag when, from a Kernaghan corner, the ball dropped to Hainon.

He sliced his shot wide from a couple of yards out, much to the disbelief of everyone at the Bluebell.

The referee blew for full time and both sides had to settle for a spoil of the shares in a hotly-contested match.


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