Seventh heaven for Portrush


AFTER a fantastic start to the New Year with a home win against Omagh, Portrush were looking for their fifth win of the season away to a strong Saintfield side.

Portrush had John Dillon and Craig Henry back in the team in place of Scott Horner and John McMullan and started the game really brightly and instantly piled the pressure on the Saintfield defence.

In the early stages Portrush could not break the deadlock, mostly because the players were still adapting to the very slow gravel surface. However after constant pressure from the Portrush forwards, John Dillon pounced on the ball and finished excellently with a reverse stick shot into the bottom corner.

The second goal for Portrush did not take long to come when some brilliant play from Neil McMaster and John Dillon put James McCook through on goal and he finished clinically.

Towards the end of the half Saintfield stepped their game up and put the Portrush defence under pressure with a number of attacks and short corners but the Ports held out to half time with a clean sheet. Half Time 0-2.

After the break Portrush again came at Saintfield with attack after attack and increased their lead to 3-0 with a second goal from James McCook. After this goal Portrush were in a comfortable position and kept possession of the ball really well and looked in control of the match.

This retention of the ball was to pay off when they scored their fourth goal of the game through John Dillon. 0-4. Portrush top goal scorer James McCook showed just why he is at the top with two more goals to make his tally in the game four and to give Portrush a 6-0 lead.

However John Dillon was also not satisfied with only two goals in the game and he finished off the scoring by claiming a well earned hat-trick as well.

Both Andy McConaghie and Neil McMaster played really great hockey on Saturday and most of the goals came from their persistence and hard work from the back to front.

Also the Portrush youth coming off the bench did not look out of place with both Graeme Christie and Craig Henry playing so well. Portrush are continuing to win game after game now and are determined not to let up in pursuit of promotion.

Portrush have a free fixture on Saturday 19th but on Saturday 26th they travel to PSNI for what will be a very important game in the season.

Team: G. McAllister(GK), R.Smith, N.McMaster, G.Kerr, A.McConaghie, L.Greene, A.Christie, A.Kerr(C), C.McKeeman, J.Dillon, J.McCook, C.Henry, G.Christie. (Man of the Match: Andy McConaghie).