The Under 17s kicked the weekend off for Carniny Youth’s sides last Friday night at a wet and windy Vale Centre in Greysteel.
The boys played out a tight match against Limavady but came back with all three points courtesy of a single Peter Rankin goal.
The U15s fought out a scoreless draw with Oxford Utd in the NIBFA Subway National League whilst the U16s lost out to Lurgan Town. There was no joy for the U11s and 12s in the Lisburn League with all three on the wrong end of scores in their games. The Under 9s racked up some invaluable experience enjoying a day of football at a Glentoran Halloween Tournament.
Carniny U9s gave a great account of themselves at Glentoran’s strongly contested Halloween tournament on Saturday at Dundonald. The boys were drawn in a group alongside one of the host’s teams, St Oliver Plunkett, and Shankill, playing some great football in heavy conditions before eventually being edged into second place by group winners Shankill.
A tense goalless quarter final against Holywood ended in defeat after a penalty shootout with Holywood going on to win the tournament outright.
Two further games against Newington and local rivals Coleraine decided the minor places in the cup.
Carniny: Adam Wharry, Charly Gregg, Rhys Clarke, Callum Fletcher, Callum King, Conor Scullion, Callum McDonald, Reuben Burnett, Kyal Smith.
Carniny Youth 3, Coleraine 4: Carniny lined up in this friendly against a much taller and more physical Coleraine team and it was no surprise when Coleraine settled first and took a very early lead.
Carniny got back into the game and Bell’s cutback from the by-line was put away by Clarke with a great finish. More pressure followed from Carniny but Coleraine took advantage of some poor defending and scored again.
Carniny lost their goalkeeper to a knee injury and Coleraine took full advantage with a third goal.
Another great pass from Bell and some great control from T Wylie saw Carniny get another goal back and put some great pressure on Coleraine to make it 3_2, but straight away Coleraine went up and scored after a mix up at the back.
Carniny then pinned the Coleraine team back for a long period and Bell took advantage to score and bring the score back to 4 - 3 but the hosts held on.
Carniny: S Bell, J Wylie, T Wylie, L O’Loan, S Young, A McPeake, C Clarke, B Donaghy, Z Bradley
Carniny Youth 5, Castle Juniors 6: Carniny took the lead when Leon Graham’s shot was only parried by the keeper and Anthony Greer, following in, scored from a tight angle.
Then Moody Moody won the ball on the left and his cross was spilled out to Graham who saw his shot blocked. C McMullan collected the rebound and fired home for 2-0 from the edge of the box. Now in control Carniny were forcing more chances and from a Greer corner, Moody rose and nodded home for 3-0.
Early in the second half, Moody took control of the ball and jinked past 2 defenders. He spotted the keeper off his line and lobbed him from just outside the box for 4-0.
With nothing to lose Castle then put more men up front. From a goal kick it went right through to their striker and he scored for 4-1. Good work from Castle on the right saw their winger go unchallenged and he squared it for a midfielder to score.
A Castle corner came over and their striker was allowed too much time to poke the ball home. Carniny were rocked and gave away a free kick that was launched into the box. In the scramble, Castle equalised.
Another long ball beat the Carniny defence and Castle went ahead. From a Scott clearance, the ball ricocheted off the Castle striker and freakishly went straight into the net for 6-4.
Carniny fought back and strong work from Graham meant he held the ball up. Supported by Moody, he laid the pass off and Moody scored an almost identical goal to his last one for his hat trick and the game finished 6-5.
Carniny: Tweed, Douglas, Murray, K McMullan, Greer, Moody, McKee, Graham, C McMullan, Wylie, Scott.
Carniny Youth 0, Oxford United 0: Opening chance of the game came for Carniny when McDonald saw his free kick rattle the cross bar.
Oxford also had a good chance from a free kick to open the scoring but O’Neill in the Carniny goal got down well to make a fine save. As the game wore on towards half time Carniny had another free kick as everyone was waiting for a strike at goal Campbell played a short ball to Woodin who saw his shot saved by the keeper who spilled the ball and Parker was unable to get there in time.
Campbell saw his free kick hit the bar late in the second half as they just couldn’t force a winner.
Carniny: O’Neill, Clyde, Lorimer, McDonald, Gordon, Campbell, Kelly, Woodin, Parker, Murray, McAllister, Shaw, Fleming.
Carniny Youth 2, Lurgan Town 3: Lurgan took the lead with their first attack.
The Carniny heads went down but were soon back up when Dawkins levelled from close range with a right foot volley. Lurgan took the lead again when Carniny failed to clear the ball at the back.
The second half was still Carniny making all the chances band they got their reward on 60 minutes when Carley was fouled and Dawkins got his second of the game with a very well struck free kick. Carniny almost went in front as Carley and Dawkins combined well down the left and got McKernan through on goal who shot on the turn beating the keeper but not the post.
With Carniny pressing for the winner Lurgan broke quickly and got their third and ultimately the winning goal to break Carniny hearts.
Carniny: O’Brien, Leetch, Scullion, Lemon, Downey, Carley, Henderson, Dawkins, Burton, McDonnell, McKernan, Evans.
Carniny Youth 1, Limavady Youth 0: Just when it looked as the teams were going to go in 0-0 at half time Carniny’s leading goal scorer Peter Rankin picked up a loose ball inside Limavady’s penalty area beat his marker and coolly finished with his left foot.
Limavady were always dangerous on the break and Gareth Kealey had to be at his best to maintain Carniny’s lead. The Limavady keeper also pulled off a couple of good saves to deny Baillie Young and Stewart Holmes and when he was beaten a Limavady defender managed to clear a Peter Rankin effort off the goal line to safety and Carniny held on for the win.
Carniny: Kealey, Johnston, McVeigh, Hull, McKee, Doherty, Greer, Graham, Holmes, Rankin, Young, Mucka, Stewart, Lorimer, Hassan, Nash.