Short corners the difference as Raphoe fall to impressive Cookstown side

Thursday, 10 November 2016

RAPHOE have had a tough couple of weeks playing some of the top teams in the league but remain optimistic that they can get their campaign back on track after a 6-2 home defeat to Cookstown.

Raphoe ...2
Cookstown ...6

Manager Richard Eaton can see that his team is working very hard but have another gear to find yet.

As has been the way the past few weeks, Raphoe started the game the stronger and broke the deficit within five minutes. A great team goal seen Luke Witherow free at the back post. John Watt laid the ball off nicely to Evan Lyttle on the right wing, who made great work around the back of the defence before squaring to Witherow, who fired home.

Raphoe didn't get ahead of themselves however as they knew the quality of the opposition they faced. They were brought back to earth very quickly when Cookstown scored from their first short corner a few minutes later. Paul Thompson fired home from the top of the circle. Cookstown took the lead on the tenth minute, again from a short corner. Ryan Miller this time the scorer.

Raphoe had a golden chance to draw level when a breakaway move culminated in John Watt rounding a defender, but shooting wide on the reverse. After this it was backs to wall for most of the remainder of the first half for Raphoe.

Cookstown scored three times between then and half-time. Raphoe's lazy defending cost them several short corners and despite several shots blocked Greg Allen slammed past Rankin for a third goal for the visitors. Soon after, Miller netted a rebound and Miller turned provider for Cole Chambers, who swept low to the net to make it 5-1.

A shell-shocked Raphoe had to dust themselves off at half time and make a few changes to prevent Cookstown having a field day. Richard Eaton and coach Vincent Devenny put some strategy in place to help neutralize Cookstown's dangerous counter attacks.

Raphoe had a much better second half performance and defended well against an impressive Cookstown side.

Despite this eight minutes into the second half, Keith Black made it 6-1, scoring again from a short corner. Kit Regan came close at the back post before Raphoe finally did get a goal back when Witherow showed his brilliance to fire home after superb inter-play with Alexander Tinney.

Witherow twice went close to getting his hat-trick, but it wasn t to be and, despite a decent second-half display, Raphoe went down to another defeat.

Raphoe travel away to North Down this Saturday with a 2.30pm start.

Raphoe: Johnny Rankin, Paul Stewart, Alan Meehan, Kit Regan, Alexander Tinney, William Kilpatrick, Jordan Devenney, Luke Witherow, Ian McGonigle, Alan Lyttle, Evan Lyttle, William Wauchope, John Watt, Tom Eaton. Manager Richard Eaton, Coach Vincent Devenney.


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