Seniors Lose at Granemore
Granemore v Harps
Harps travelled to Granemore this afternoon for a fixture that was always going to be tough, given the respective league form of both sides. However the nature of the performance and the size of the defeat was a depressing surprise to many of our supporters in the crowd.
Harps started off playing into a tricky breeze and although Granemore had a couple of early chances, it was Harps who opened the scoring through Nippy Swift with a free from distance. However our lead was short lived as a long ball into our defence was misjudged and a penalty was conceded. The spot kick was duly despatched to the net. Granemore added a point and were denied by some good blocking in the Harps defence. We responded well with points from Ebby and Nippy (from a free), but Granemore were displaying a movement and sharpness in attack that was causing our defence plenty of worries. Granemore were now scoring from every visit inside our fifty and although we managed two further points through Nippy and a brilliant Ultan Lennon effort, Granemore took full control in the ten minutes before half time and added a succession of points to take total command. To add to our woes, Philly McKinney had to leave the field injured, and he was replaced in the middle by Laurence McKenna. Somewhat against the run of play, we managed to break up the pitch and scored the last point of the half through a Nippy Swift free.
Half time, Granemore 1-11, Harps 0-06.
The Harps’ support was hoping that the wind advantage could help get their side back into the game, but these hopes were quickly dashed. Granemore, playing a much more direct and purposeful game, added the first three points of the half – the third of which was an absolutely brilliant effort from an acute angle. Harps rallied briefly and added the next two points though an Ultan Lennon free and a Smackers effort from a throw ball. However any chance of a comeback was snuffed out when a goal chance fell to Smackers soon after but the keeper parried his shot out. From there to the final whistle the Harps play was marked by a distinct lack of heart, with the only bright spots being isolated individual efforts to get scores. Harps were not to score for the remainder of the half whilst Granemore themselves could afford a few wides with the game in the bag. Granemore did though close out the game with three further points to finish a massive twelve points to the good.
Final score, Granemore 1-17, Harps 0-08.
The less said about this game the better. Harps were thoroughly outplayed by what appeared to be a fitter, sharper and hungrier Granemore team, who played a direct style of football that had Harps struggling throughout. The Harps lined out as follows. Gareth Richards, Neil McArdle, Martin Gill (Jarlath Crilly), Hugh McSorley, Chuckie Morris, Charlie Vernon, Kevin Daly (Ciaran McKenna), Philly McKinney (Laurence McKenna), Simon Lennon, Harpo McKenna, Nippy Swift 0-4 (0-3 frees), Ebby Toal 0-1, Liam McKenna (Smackers McAnaney 0-1), Ultan Lennon 0-2 (0-1 free) and Conor Coulter.